Florafelt pockets can sometimes become dry. It can seem mysterious because pockets above and below are wet. This occurs because the plants above are taking up more water than the surrounding plants. When this reaches a threshold, the plants below will not get the water they need. Even folding of the felt in the Pro System and consistent wrapping of plants will help to even out the water usage throughout the wall. Also choosing plants that have the same water requirement will make this easier. There are cases where there is uneven exposure from light, airflow, or a unique mix of plants will cause problems. Here are some solutions to the problem and some workarounds to handle unique situations.
Cause of the problem
- The plants above are absorbing more water than the other rows leaving the plants below dry.
- The plants below are getting water from moisture reabsorbing from the plants to their sides.
- A dry area will repel water, which means the area has become hydrophobic causing the water to flow around it.
- Add additional drip emitters to the top of the problem row.
- Add a 1/2 gallon drip emitter next to the existing emitters.
- This will add more moisture the the column which should reach the dry plants below.
To ensure proper flow also
- Remove dry plants and the plants above the problem area.
- Use a small rod to gently press down the center of the pockets to redirect water toward the middle of the pockets.
- Run the system to make sure the flow has returned to the center of the pocket column.
- Spray a small amount of light dilution of mild detergent mix into the bottom of the problem pocket and some pockets above the area.
- With the plants removed, visually observe that the flow is returning to the bottom fold of the pockets.
- Thoroughly re-moisten the soil of dry plants to also make sure they are wicking moisture.
- Push the plants deep into the pocket to make sure they touch the bottom fold.
- Check back the next few days to make sure flow is working properly in this area.
Uneven exposure solutions
- Add an additional 1/2 gallon emitter to the irrigation tube above the problem area
- Attach a piece of 1/4 inch irrigation tubing to the emitter
- Direct the tubing to the problem area.
- Position the tubing inside the pocket to water the bottom of the pocket.
- Do not direct the water directly to a plants soil.
- Always encourage the moisture to wick from the bottom of each pocket.