Monday, April 11, 2011

Aqua Globes

There are very few drawbacks to micro-farming, but the difficulty of getting away for a vacation has to be the main one.  Given that I start some seedlings in January and am actively preserving food into October, the window in which I am not gardening is pretty narrow.  This is great from a sanity-maintenance perspective, but I am unwilling to commit to never leaving my property.  (As a counterpoint, a coworker just told me of a farmer with dairy cattle who hasn't had a vacation in ten years.  No thanks.)

Last year, when we went to Key West, I lost quite a few pepper seedlings to lack of water.  I was unwilling to lose that many this year, but I was also unwilling to give up my trip down island.  So, I actually took inspiration from television commercials and ordered some Aqua Globes.

I expected them to not work, but I thought they were cheap enough for an experiment (under $7 per pair; I think I caught an even-better sale when I ordered mine) and they were pretty, regardless.  And with a few big pots of pepper seedlings, a key lime tree, and a nectarine tree, I was slightly desperate.

And you know what?  They work!  I just filled them with water, carefully pushed the stem into the soil, and let the plant take the water it needed during the week we were gone.  You can see the key lime tree enjoying a drink above. (Note:  be careful.  Drill yourself a hole in the soil first, and don't just ram them into the soil.  They are glass, and you risk breakage, not to mention the potential of cutting your hand.  Just follow the directions and you'll be fine.)

They seemed pretty silly on the face of them, but they certainly saved my investment in my crops thus far, and I didn't have to give up my trip south. 

(Note:  the link below is an affiliate link.  If you wish to support FC&G and wanted to buy these, I'll get a few cents back from your purchase.  If not, I have seen them in hardware stores, and I encourage you to patronize a local merchant.)

The Analysis

Fast:  These are quick to deploy, and they certainly save watering time even when I am home.

Cheap:  I think the price is reasonable as insurance against plant death, and they should last a long time if I treat them carefully.

Good:  Protecting my plants gives me peace of mind. 

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