Autopots automatically keep your garden irrigated without the use of pumps or timers. Leave your plants for weeks, safe in the knowledge the autopot will look after your irrigation regime. Autopots are easy to use, robust and reliable so will see you through years of trouble free service. For more info on our selection of Autopot systems and how best to use them in your garden, read our buyer’s guide below.
Autopot systems don’t require timers or pumps as their patented AQUAvalve maintains an oscillating wet and dry cycle. Plants in autopots receive precisely the amount of nutrient solution they require as each pot only floods once it’s sufficiently dried out. Autopots also have the advantage of working from gravity - you just mount the reservoir higher than the pots and the aquavalve allows the solution to drain into the pot. Once the bottom tray has reached its flood level, the aquavalve shuts the flow off until the tray is completely empty when it floods again. This process occurs as frequently as required per pot so each plant receives only what they need, when they need it.
Autopots use a bottom-feeding technique, where the nutrient solution is delivered directly to a bottom tray. The substrate then absorbs this moisture through capillary action throughout the medium, where plant roots have access to the nutrients and water. We recommend hand-watering your plants in autopot systems until they have become fully established, which may take up to 14 days after which you'll just need to keep your system topped up.
To get the most out of the gravity fed system, the reservoir for autopot systems should be mounted at least 15 cm higher than the level of the highest Aquavalve; This will enable water to flow through the pipework with as little resistance as possible, ensuring all aqua valves will operate properly. The fact autopots are gravity fed means no pumps and no timers so the system is completely silently operating.
Autopots are very versatile and can be used with a number of substrates including soil, coco, mapito, perlite and hydroton - you just need a substrate that can use capillary action to wick the water up. Autopot recommends a mix of hydroton and soil for the perfect mix of aeration with strong water retention capabilities. It’s also recommended to put a layer of clay balls at the bottom of each pot to increase drainage and ensure plants don't become oversaturated or drown.
Any nutrient used in an autopot must leave no residue. Nutrients that have a tendency to settle out should be avoided as the pipework for autopots is very thin and can become blocked easily. For this reason it’s recommended to use a product such as drip clean, ATA clean, oxy-plus or silver bullet which will keep pipes working. It’s important to clean the system between crops to keep the system working and reduce any chances of disease, cross contamination or down time in the event of system failure.
Reservoir changes are the only thing required to keep your system irrigating but use of an automatic top-up valve to automatically add water to your reservoir when its getting low will allow you to leave your plants for much longer periods of time without actively tending to them. Autopot’s are perfect for those wishing to use organic techniques with many of the benefits automatic hydroponic systems bring to the table such as speedier growth and increased yields when compared to hand watering.
If you’ve got more questions about the Autopot systems we stock or if you’re unsure if they’re right for your garden, get in touch with our specialist team on 0800 085 7995 or email us or call our specialist team on 0800 085 7995 who can advise you further on the applications of feed timers