In another attempt to keep the vegetables growing in spite of water restrictions, I took a new approach with the garden at my family’s home in Ocean Beach. Rather than assigning one plant per drip line (or even doubling up two plants on one drip line) as I used to do, I put in just one of each plant (1 tomato, 1 eggplant, 1 cucumber etc.) and put two drip lines on each plant. I planted back in the beginning go of June as a father’s day gift to my Dad, and returning two weeks later, the results are pretty good. It seems like they are getting enough water (2x a week, 7 minutes on drip) and that the extra elbow room may actually help with air circulation and keeping diseases down. You can see some ‘before/after’ pix from two weeks ago and today in the slide show.
When I planted, I added ‘soil most’ silicate beads (see picture) in addition to some fertilizer and heavy mulch. I also planted in pretty deep holes, forming a resivoir around each plant. We’ll watch the garden through the summer, and see how it does once we take the watering down to 5 minutes instead of 7. I also cheated bit on my strategy, and pulled away a few of the double-teamed drip lines to water some pole beans I planted at my father’s request. He probably supplements watering once a week when he comes out to water his strawberries and the espallied apple tree, so the results may be a bit misleading–but we may get some beans out of it.