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Vegetable garden set up.

Dec 22, 2010

Have you ever set up a vegetable garden? You probably have but have you given much thought; apart from enriching the soil with fertilizers and mulch, as to the aspect - which direction the slope and sun comes from. Obviously if you have a flat plot this is irrelevant, however do you have, or are intending to have Chooks and Ducks? An excellent way to fertilise your garden is to have a Duck Pond uphill; only needs a slight slope, from your vegetable plot. Ducks love to fertilize the water, which requires draining to give fresh water about; depending on how many ducks you have, every 3 weeks. This Duck water waters and fertilises and the results are amazing. When setting this up it is a good idea to have several; or at least one, drain point at the bottom of the pond that can pipe the water to various points of the garden; ideally each pipe should have a tap at the end so water can be used as required. If you cannot make one large pond, just put in several; depending on duck numbers, old bath tubs, usually can be picked up for free or at wreckers fairly cheaply and these have the advantage of easily fitting a drain pipe as the bath is already fitted with an outlet. Have fun. Cheers, Andrew.


How would I buld it or is it above ground & how do I drain it. Are we talking kiddy plastic pool or something better built? I am thinking of getting chickens or ducks, maybe both. For weed/ insect control around my garden & eggs. Compost is of a lesser concern at this time. Rabbits are good for compost & weed control, but do nothing about insects. Fowl will eat good bugs too.
I know from experience what you mean about darkening duck water & ducks do need fresh water to dip their heads & eyes for best health. I will be thinking about how to incorporate this wonderful, gravity-fed cycle into a raised-bed garden I am considering in town on a south slope below the house. A few chickens are allowed in our town - ducks should be acceptable. Joel, I hope Andrew will respond to your practical valve question with any solutions he has worked out. I always like to start an experiment with the best solution so far. I also wonder about methods for fertilized water delivery. Dark duck water would clog soaker hose pores & maybe even drip system outlets. What does the best delivery system so far look like? For an eggs, pond, fertilizer & wildlife? combination this appealing I would be willing to hand-deliver the duck water with a larger hose, all the while remembering John Jeavons' observant reasons for hand watering the garden.
Andrew is the pro here, but you could screen the dark duck water(DDW) though burlap bag into a bucket/drum to use like compost tea, throw the simsolids/solids that are traped in the bag in the compost pile. Most are in the DDW will flow in to the bucket & can be used in hand watering or just put it on a bed not in use it this time. A cover crop bed.
I think I would rather imagine myself using valves & hoses big enough to flush the slight-but-clogging DDW solids out of the pond with each stirred-up irrigation session & a regular flush-to-empty-cleanout maybe once a month. Come to think of it - given the reliable DDW production of the ducks - I wonder about calculating the vegetable garden fertilization capacity of 3 ducks - our town limit is presently 3 chickens per household. Are we talking DDW capacity for sharing? or delivering beyond the vegetable garden? or finding "will work for DDW tea" garden helpers? :-)

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