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Better Flower Pot

Has Terraced Innards
(+1, -1)
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Flower pots tend to come in two main types. One type is a simple container that can hold a fair amount of water, which can actually be too much for a plant (the roots can rot).

Another type has a hole in the bottom, and this type sits in a shallow bowl. When water is added to the pot, much of it flows out the hole into the bowl. One can use the water level in the bowl as an indicator of when more water should be added to the pot. However, here the problem is that the the dirt in the pot can be mostly too dry, since the water is mostly down at the bottom, and only the bottom-most dirt is wet all the time. The plant as a whole might not be getting enough water.

So, imagine an empty flower pot, the kind with a hole in the bottom, that also has a kind of "terrace" on the inside wall of the pot. We don't want this terrace to be flat/level, we want it to be able to hold some water. Now imagine two or three such terraces inside the pot (or more if the pot is tall). We still have the central volume of the pot for holding the plant. And it should still be easy to fill it with soil.

When we add water, we pour it along the inside wall of the pot. This water can fill the terrace, and then flow over the inside terrace wall, and down to the next terrace. Then that terrace can be filled, and so on. Eventually water flows out the hole at the bottom, and starts to fill the shallow bowl.

Since the plant is in the center of all these terraces, only its side-ways-growing roots will reach them. The plant actually has a choice regarding how much root to grow/immerse into the saturated soil in the terraces.

As before, the water level in the bowl lets us know when more water should be added to the pot. Only now we know that while the bowl has been drying, plenty of water had also been present inside the main volume of the flower pot. The plant should have a much-lower risk of dying of thirst.

Vernon, Jun 11 2013

Slackware http://www.slackware.com/
No, [bigsleep], Slackware is still going strong. I do admit I was deliberately studying a more difficult distribution than, say, Debian. [Vernon, Jun 12 2013]


       I've been doing some stuff with Linux recently, and it has various pluses and minuses, compared to Windows. The particular flavor of Linux, this time, is called "Slackware v14.0", and it came with something called the "K Desktop Environment" or KDE for short. Many of the applications have names beginning with "K"; the web browser is called "Konqueror".   

       Certain other events today inspired this flowerpot Idea, so I thought I would post it using that browser. For some reason, as yet unknown to me (perhaps a configuration issue), only the first line of text got posted, and the rest was lost. This happened twice, only the second time I didn't actually lose the text because I copy/pasted it to a completely different application before clicking the OK button here.   

       After that I tried opening my Web-email access point, and sending a message to myself, using the saved text. Nope, that didn't work either; only the first line of text was sent; Konqueror was definitely having a problem.   

       So I took that other application, saved the text as a file, and then emailed the file to myself as an attachment. That worked, so I could open the file with a different browser on a different computer, and finally post the text to the HB. Sorry for the delay; there was a TV show that I had wanted to see, that just started as the first attempt to post the idea had failed, using Konqueror. And that distracted me from noticing that the title was misspelled (now fixed).
Vernon, Jun 12 2013

       I use slackware too (still v13). I agree [bigs], it's not a consumer product.
piluso, Jun 12 2013

       Anyway, folks, I was just trying to explain why this Idea failed to meet my usual standards, when I first tried to post it. I was hoping for some feedback about whether or not this really is a better flower pot, not a discussion on Linux.
Vernon, Jun 13 2013

       I had already bunned it and was hoping for a continuation of the Linux discussion. :)   

       As to whether it's a better flowerpot, I imagine that would have lots to do with the water-retention properties of whatever's being used for soil.
FlyingToaster, Jun 13 2013

       But using the soil for water-retention essentially takes the pot itself out of the equation!
Vernon, Jun 13 2013

       It would be easy enough to test: bury some bowls right-side-up in a flower pot. Eventually the roots will knock them over, but it will be awhile.
FlyingToaster, Jun 14 2013


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