Its not too often I come across a product that rates so well, that it requires a redefinition of the awesome scale. But this weekend just gone I had the honour of working with such a product.
Its called the Ecobag - and on a scale of one to awesome; its like, twelve awesomes. The Ecobag is a twenty-five litre bladder that sits flat to the ground around your tree & drips a slow but constant flow of water at the base of the tree. But, there's more! It also inhibits weed growth around the neck of the tree - one of the few short-comings of the weed-fabric of awesomeness (the edges tend to loose most arm-wrestling matches with things like Kikuyu). Of course, you can see where I'm going with this: The combination of the Ecobag and the weed-fabric, you've got a combination so legendary that had they been around in ancient times, Homer would have needed to write another ballad. At a cost of about $12, and $21 in combination with a roll of weed fabric, saving time never cost so little.
So lets look at the applications.
In the remaining bed of the orchard, I'm rather hoping that one day I'll be able to have a 1,000L aquaponics tank. That means I'd like all the plants in this bed to be renters, not buyers. So I'm leaving my citrus potted & sinking the pots below the level of the ground. With time constraints, I've always had a lot of trouble keeping my pots adequately watered, fertilised and weeded. Rollout the red carpet, and blow the trumpets! The Bag will do all three.
In the top bed previously featured with the weed-fabric; I've done just what I described previously, and used it to cover the remaining open area with something some determined weeds can't push out the way. Lets see evil get around this one. But also pretty importantly, I won't need to worry quite so much about these trees when I go traveling for weeks in the height of summer.
So make the best decision you've made in a while; and get yourself some of these!