Of course, after all the effort spent obtaining that water, it would be a shame to use it poorly, or use more of it than needed How are San Diegans then to garden? Every gardener knows that plants need consistent moisture, especially in sun-soaked areas like San Diego.
Plants, surprisingly, don't use most of the water they are given. Most of the water that falls on the soil percolates down into the soil into aquifers, runs off into rivers, or just evaporates. Plants also use much moisture to cool themselves through a process very similar to sweating - transpiration - and this water is never recaptured. This, to us, seems like a very wasteful system.
Is there anything that can decrease this water waste in the garden- especially given San Diego new very expensive, very energy intensive water? Yes - there is - a device called the Groasis Waterboxx PlantCocoon, or Waterboxx for short.
Waterboxx is a device, inspired by biomimicry or learning from nature. In nature, several lizards and beetles survive in very dry areas by having condensation form on tiny pyramids on their bodies. This water is channeled to their mouths, allowing these animals to literally "drink the air". Perhaps these creatures were the inspiration for the ad campaign "taste the rainbow".
How is the Waterboxx completing desalination? Well - it isn't doing the whole process on its own. The sun is causing water to evaporate from the ocean, filling the air with humidity and sometimes rain clouds. The Waterboxx can harvest the humidity as morning dew and, when it does rain, harvest the rain. This prevents the water being wasted - natural desalination.
Once the water is in the soil the Waterboxx prevents the sun from reaching it - preventing evaporation. The soil can still get oxygen, though, thanks to the Waterboxx's design.
How does this help San Diegans? Well - the Waterboxx allows you to plant many garden plants and then never water them again! That's right - many plants like tomatoes, eggplants, tomatillos and peppers, if planted one per Waterboxx with a single wick, will likely not need any watering after planting during the whole growing season.
For more water hungry plants like melons, extra wicks can be added but the Waterboxx needs refilling only once every few weeks at most - a huge savings in water and time. You can see results of growing with the Waterboxx in southern California on our website here.
|2 Zucchini plants growing with the Waterboxx - no water after Waterboxx set up and still 28 zucchini were harvested.|
If you would like to learn how to grow plants without watering with the Waterboxx, the best resource is the book The Waterboxx Gardener: How to Mimic Nature, Stop Watering, and Start Enjoying Your Garden available here on Amazon.com.