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When you only have ONE minute to water…

Amanda Commins

Amanda Commins

February 2, 2016

On a trip to France a few years ago we went to visit Les Jardins du Manoir d’Eyrignac. This magnificent garden, located in Dordogne – Périgord, is worthy of a review but this is not the intention of this piece. What I want to mention is the kitchen garden and, more specifically, the water container / tank in the kitchen garden.

Jardins d'Eyrignac kitchen garden with water bowl

Jardins d’Eyrignac kitchen garden with water bowl

In French it has the more glamorous-sounding name of abreuvoir, which translates to our much more mundane ‘trough’ and it was originally used out in the fields for water for cattle. I wondered if here it was being used for watering in the kitchen garden, whether it could be to create or contribute to humidity levels / a micro-climate, or whether it was just decorative. I still don’t know the answers.

Nonetheless it struck me that it could be handy to have something like this for those times when plants need water and time is thin on the ground. It has taken me a few years to get around to it, but I now have a pond / water feature in the courtyard that doubles as a handy watering tool. It also sidelines as a sometimes water bowl and/or wading pool for the dog but that is another story.

My courtyard water bowl - great for a quick plant-watering

My courtyard water bowl – great for a quick plant-watering

The pond is not that big (approx. 25cm deep x 85cm wide) but big enough, with the aid of a bucket (or empty fertiliser container), to water the pot plants in the courtyard. I find that if time is limited it is much quicker and easier to grab the bucket and water rather than trying to roll out the hose etc.

It is also easier if you happen to notice that a plant needs a drink just as you are about to head out the door. This year our potted blueberries were much more productive due to the regular water they received and this in turn was due to the fact that I found it easier to keep up the watering using this method.

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Geraldine Anne
8 years ago

Do you find mosquitoes are a problem?

8 years ago
Reply to  Geraldine Anne

Hi Geraldine. I haven’t found them to be a problem. It might be because I use the water quite regularly, I’m not sure. If the water does get a bit murky, I bucket out as much as I can and can then tip the pond up on to one end to empty it fully. I haven’t had to do that very often though.

Marcotta Miller
8 years ago

I am installing water barrels and,drip irrigation attached to a hose and timer this year.plus redoing my soil to a composted soil mix to hold water better.

8 years ago

That is beautiful AND practical! What is it made of and may we know where it is from? I can also imagine placing a thirsty pot into it to rehydrate..

8 years ago
Reply to  Coco

Hi Coco. Glad you like it. Mine is from Garden Elegance, 150 Railway Rd, Subiaco (Perth) – I believe it is part of the Northcote Pottery ‘Atlantis’ range. And you are right, it is perfect for rehydrating thirsty pots.