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question on garden gadgets

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I have pouring over my gardening catalogs the last couple days and have come across a couple "gadgets" I was wondering if anybody here used.


1) those red trays or red plastic mulch you put under your tomato plants (and even strawberries, I think) that are suppose to help you have better production. If you have used these, what has been your expereince...good or bad. Like this: Tomato Craterâ„¢, 3-pack | Gardeners Edge or

Tomato Red Mulch Film Roll | Gardeners Edge


2) it's like a big water pillow that you fill and put around your newly planted trees or other plants you want to slowly water. Do they work? Like this: Ooze Tube Tomato Watering System, 40 Gallon | Gardeners Edge or New! Leonard ArborRainâ„¢ Hydration System, 20 Gallon | Gardeners Edge

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I have a very large garden - 100+ roses, plus vegetables and herbs.

I water with a garden hose or watering can. I would rather spend my money on soil prep or plants. ;) I also live in a very hot climate and many plastic items start to break down during the summer, making them unusable for more than one year.

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I have used the red mulch and was happy with the results. But not happy enough to buy more for the next year!


About the irrigation system---my mom use to do the exact same thing with an old milk jug. She poke little holes(using a push pin) in the bottom and sides of a plastic gallon milk jug. Buried the jug letting the top 1/'2 exposed. Filled top of jug with water and let the water slowly ooze into the soil.

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I don't have either, but I'm sure they could be handy in the right situation. We've found that soaker hoses under hay mulch work best for the way we garden. We put brass quick connectors on the ends so we can change where the water goes conveniently. We garden in both in raised beds and in rows. I think that filling all those tomato craters for our 30 plants would get old really fast. The same goes for the water pillow thing, if we had enough trees. It's so much easier to turn on a soaker hose. The hoses and connectors last for years.


I've never used the red mulch, but from what I've heard scientists had better harvests with it. I just don't like to use plastic as mulch. I think it's a pain, and when you're all done with it eventually, you have the plastic to throw away.


Just my $0.02, fwiw.



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