The self watering raised garden beds are unique in design are also known as wicking beds. They are called wicking beds because the self watering in the raised beds are done using wicks. These wicks transport the water from a reservoir containing huge quantities of water to the soil. They are designed using the capillary action of water to water the plants even when the gardener is not around.
There are several designs of these garden beds. You can make the raised beds from different kinds of wood like cedar wood, redwood, etc and they can be made of other materials like steel as well for durability. It is preferred that you use wood as they are more eco friendly though the other materials may last longer and keep out pests better.
You can design the raised garden beds to be at different heights as well. If you prefer to do your gardening standing up, you can increase the heights of the raised beds. These are very helpful for people who find it difficult to bend or for elderly people and the self watering design will reduce the task of watering the beds.
The self watering raised garden beds are designed to water the plants from bottom up. This will prevent a lot of water wastage and also the frequency of watering. You just have to fill the reservoir once in a while. The wicks are placed in the raised beds above the water pipes and below the soil. In this way, the water slowly climbs the wick to the soil around the roots of the plant. The soil will be kept constantly moist by this, making the plants lush, green and more yielding.
There are also designs which have reservoirs with media and reservoirs without media. With media, the reservoirs have gravel as a middle layer and is cheap to build. Those without media are suspended above the water reservoir.
The self watering raised garden beds designs include global buckets, earth box, phytopod. The global buckets are very cheap to build and can hold a lot of water. The earth box is designed by professional growers with all the self watering features necessary to grow plants. The phytopods are vertical mesh like structures which provide water to the plants as well.