Tag: drainage

Importance of Drainage

Quatro Design Drainage Guide

Drainage is the most important aspect of container gardening and is critical to plant health. It is a natural process by which water moves through and out of the soil as a result of gravity. Water in the soil needs to drain freely to ensure that sufficient air is available for root uptake.

Roots need to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide with the air, if excess water is present it closes off air pockets in the soil and roots start suffocating. A lack of drainage is one of the most common causes of unhealthy and dying plants, as waterlogged soil can lead to root rot. This is a serious condition that plants rarely recover from. Signs of root rot include wilted and yellowing leaves and eventual leaf-drop. If the plant is removed from the container the roots may appear black or brown with a slimy texture.

Excess water also place additional pressure on the container base and sides and if drainage is not corrected surface cracks will appear.

Optimum drainage should always be the objective as healthy roots mean healthy plants. Containers need sufficient drainage holes in the bottom to let any excess water drain away. More plants are killed by drowning or rot than by under-watering. The provision of a permeable screen or filler material at the bottom of the pot will allow water to pass through and prevent drainage holes from blocking.

Note that even if the soil surface appears dry, the soil at the bottom of the pot may be saturated.

Our bowls, pots and planters come standard with internal acrylic water-based waterproofing to protect the pot surface and with drainage holes already installed. The location, size and number of drainage holes relate to the size of the pot and its soil volume.

Some projects require the installation of drainage holes on site so we’ve created a drainage guide to provide assistance with this. Guidelines are provided on minimum drainage hole sizes, recommended drill’s and drill bits etc to ensure that adequate drainage is achieved.

Please contact us to discuss the requirements of your pot selection if drainage holes need to be installed on site after product delivery and we’ll gladly provide guidelines on the number and size of drainage holes required.

Links to our Drainage and Planting Guides

Coming soon — new drainage device for planters

Keeping the drainage holes in the base of pots and planters from getting blocked is important to ensure good drainage.  The growing media/potting mix can block the holes causing water-logging which in turn can cause root rot in the plants.

Various approaches are typically used to ensure good drainage in pots, such as putting a layer of gravel in first and covering with flyscreen mesh or geofabric.  Here at Quatro Design, we’ve come up with a new and simple device to facilitate good pot drainage — the DrainEZE drainage hole screen.

The device (patent pending) is a conical dome with vertical openings to enable water to pass into an air chamber above the drainage hole.  This greatly increases the area through which water can pass, compared to the drainage hole by itself.

To prevent soil from passing through into the air chamber and then blocking the drainage hole, the moulded plastic device is covered with geofabric that is secured at the top with a press-on clip. The geofabric extends out on to the floor of the pot where it is covered with the growing media.

Depending on the size of the pot, the DrainEZE drainage hole screen will be held in position over the drainage hole by the weight of the growing media on it and the geofabric.  If you’re concerned that plant roots might might move the device from over the hole, it can be glue-fixed in position using a semi-flexible adhesive such as a silicone or polyurethane adhesive.

This new drainage hole will be available within the next few weeks, as soon as the plastic injection mould is machined, and the first batch of devices is made.  We’ll keep you informed.

You will then be able to have DrainEZE drainage hole screen fitted to your Quatro pots and planters when ordering.  We will glue-fix them over the drainage holes so all you need to do is fill the pots with a good quality growing media.

We also plan to sell the DrainEZE drainage hole screen separately so you can fit them to pots you source from elsewhere.