Skip navigation.

Cloches

Last post 05-02-2008 10:17 AM by Plantman. 6 replies.

Page 1 of 1 (7 items)

  • 30/01/2008 08:19 PM
    • greenback
    • West London
    • 03 Sep 2007
    • 17
    Top 500 Contributor
    Reply | Contact

    This is probably a silly question but I can't find an answer to it anywhere. I quite fancy trying some of these soft or rigid plastic cloches on the allotment but can't work out how to water them. They need pegging down along the length both sides in some way, or are stretched over metal hoops. I tried a fleece version last year but everything died of drought. I can't use a hose on our site and can,t work out how to water the plants under a cloche unless you have to remove and replace all the pegs or hoops every time. I am sure I am missing something obvious so can someone help please.

  • 31/01/2008 10:15 AM
    • Herbie2
    • 31 Jan 2008
    • 1
    Not Ranked
    Reply | Contact

    Have had the same problem, but overcame it by:- Take a tube, hose pipe will do but something slightly larger if possible -make holes in it every 2 inches approx. The tube needs to be about the same length as the tunnel - block the end - lay it in the tunnel - then using a can pour water down the tube - by raising it slightly you will get the water to the far end of the tunnel -'et voila' the plants are watered !! Hope this works as well for you as it does for me. Herbie2

  • 31/01/2008 10:41 AM
    Top 10 Contributor
    Reply | Contact

    I find that the rain runs down the sides of the cloches and then spreads sideways so you don't need to water mature crops very much. Younger ones need watering, but since you have to open the cloche to weed, you can take advantage of this to water at the same time. However, I find cloches a bit fiddly and time consuming and usually go for fleece through which rain and irrigation penetrate. Boggy

    Beware the bat-eared bogweevil
  • 02/02/2008 11:11 AM
    • Plantman
    • North Yorkshire
    • 30 Jan 2008
    • 276
    Top 50 Contributor
    Reply | Contact

    I use cloches regularly, as I have the uncertainty if the North Yorkshire weather to worry about. I am lucky as I can used a hosepipe which has holes for dribbling. I also use irrigation pipes. I can see that you have a problem in that you can't use a hose pipe, however, how about this. - place short lengths of hose pipe/s, with dribbling holes in them, and cut them to the length of the cloche, but leave an excess of about a foot. Connect the pipes together to leave just one end. Connect this end to some means of pouring water from a can, such as a funnel (made from a plastic bottle, perhaps), or it could be connected to a rainwater butt or small tank which is slightly raised. (Sorry, I would like to do a little drawing to explain, but I don't know how). I have built a brick & block tank for collecting rainwater and attached a short length of hose to it, at the bottom. The hose is long enough so that when it is placed upright, it is higher than the top of the tank. This position doesn't let water out. When I want to use it, I just lay it down and out comes the water. This can be connected to another length of pipe that waters my soft fruit trees. It can also be used for filling watering cans. Something like this could be used in the same way for your cloches. Of course, this all depends on you being able to collect rain water. If you don't have a building to collect water from, then you can always dig a hole to collect water and put in a small pump, to pump it into a container that is above ground. Let me know how you get on.

  • 02/02/2008 12:16 PM
    • greenback
    • West London
    • 03 Sep 2007
    • 17
    Top 500 Contributor
    Reply | Contact

    Thanks to everyone for really helpful replies. I do understand this idea though as I don't have any buildings on the plot it will be a case of pouring water into the funnel from a watering can -but still a lot easier than moving the cloche. We are going to try this - starting with one cloche/ pipe and if Ok moving on to the fully fledged Plantman approach - one query we have though is how do you stop all the water coming out from the holes at the nearest end to the water source? Is it to do with the size of the holes ? Hope to get a shed as soon as I have cleared the land at the bottom of the plot so will experiment with a butt and hose arrangement then.

  • 02/02/2008 03:24 PM
    • DunDiggin
    • Bracknell, Berkshire
    • 25 Feb 2007
    • 62
    Top 150 Contributor
    Reply | Contact

    Its all in the physics. Small hole in relation to bore of pipe, ie volume of water, limits amount of water that can leak through hole, therefore the bulk of the water takes the easiest route along the tube. This works even if the water feed is pressurized, except then you get fountains :-)

    DunDiggin

    Blog: http://vortexs-veg-patch.blogspot.com
  • 05/02/2008 10:17 AM
    • Plantman
    • North Yorkshire
    • 30 Jan 2008
    • 276
    Top 50 Contributor
    Reply | Contact

    Self help watering systems are often trial and error. I have tried most methods. Some are good, but time consuming. Others are expensive. Some just aren't right for the plot. My system works because it has been trial and error for the last 4 years. This one suits me. I just wish that this forum had been around when I was making my first foray into vegetable gardening. It would have saved a lot of time. It would have taken some of the fun out of it though. I am glad to see that you are going to try it. Best of luck with it. I also agree with Vortex. It is to do with the size of the holes. Size does matter.