FAQs

We would love to hear from you if your question is not answered - contact us at grow@avalow.com

What should I know before I purchase an Avalow?

Here's what you need to have the best growing experience:
A Sunny Outdoor Spot: Plants grow best with at least 4-6 hours of direct sunlight per day.
A Level Space: Your Avalow’s footprint is 28”x18”, but we recommend a 3’ x 3’ area to ensure easy access to your plants.
Power / Water Access: No power needed! The reservoir will need to be topped off about every 5 days (and not at all if it rains!). A standard garden hose or water pitcher work great for filling the reservoir.
Time Commitment: You'll need to set aside 5-10 minutes each week for simple maintenance like adding water, pruning, checking for insects and and harvesting!

Does the Avalow come with a warranty?

Your Avalow is under warranty for 10 years (yes - 10 years!) - find more info by clicking here

What is your return policy?

We don't offer returns on the Avalow hardware, but we do replace units damaged in transit
Your Coaching Box, which is a part of Avalow’s Coaching membership, are not eligible for returns but we do ship replacements for plants damaged during shipping.
If you have received a defective Avalow, we will replace it for you! Please see our Warranty information by clicking here .
In the event that you are unhappy with any part of your Coaching Box Delivery, contact us (grow@avalow.com) or call Customer Care at 1 (844) 428-2569 within three (3) days of the date you received the unsatisfactory item. If related to the condition of a Coaching Box Delivery, we will send you replacement seedlings.
With all replacements, we do reserve the right to require either the return of an unsatisfactory item, or a photograph of such, before any replacements are sent.

Hardware

How does the self-watering system work?

Avalow raised beds function through the process of sub-irrigation, or watering from beneath the soil. In your Avalow raised bed, water is pulled out of the wicks and into the soil through capillary action. To see this principle in action, you can experiment by putting celery in a glass of water with food dye. Over a few days you’ll see the color rising into the stalk!

How do I fill the reservoir?

To fill the reservoir, remove the cap from the fill tube and insert your hose or water pitcher. Let the water run until you see water coming out of the overflow under the Avalow. Because the reservoir outlet drains away excess water, it is impossible to overfill your reservoir.

How often do I need to fill the reservoir?

We recommend filling the reservoir every five days during the hottest, driest time of year and once per month during the wet months. The amount of water used will depend on your garden location and the types of plants being grown, but you can't add too much water to the reservoir so you don't have to worry about overwatering from below!
When you fill your reservoir, it's a great time to check your plants for progress and see what may need harvesting!

Water is pouring out of the bottom of the Avalow, help!

Don't worry - it's just working as designed! You’ll know your reservoir is full when water runs out of the overflow (underside of your Avalow).

Do I need to water if it’s raining?

Fun fact, you do not need to fill your reservoir during rainy days. Yay! The reservoir collects water automatically from saturated soil.

Do I need to remove the soil after the season ends/at the start of a new season?

Nope. As long as you keep your soil healthy you are good to plant each season without removing and replacing the soil. The only time you will need to remove your soil is if it becomes diseased. Adding organic matter in the form of compost and aged manure, or using mulch or growing cover crops, is the best way to prepare the soil for planting and to keep it healthy!

How do I remove the soil?

Carefully. Use a hand shovel or trowel to dig the soil out. The reservoir is in the bottom 7” of the bed, so once you have dug down about 6", we recommend using your hands to feel for the reservoir, so you can carefully remove the remaining soil and not disturb the reservoir.
You do not need to remove the secondary soil blend (from top of reservoir down) - this is an insulating layer that will slowly breakdown over time to add organic material into your soil.

Where is the best placement for my Avalow?

A location that receives a minimum of 4-6 hours of full sun, ideally morning sun and afternoon shade. Your Avalow is insulated, but taking advantage of natural (or manmade) shade will help cool your garden and keep the plants happier in warm weather, preventing heat stress. If you consistently have temperatures over 85 degrees, we suggest a partially shaded location.
During the Fall season, transplants are more sensitive to heat and care should be taken when temperatures reach 75 degrees.

Exceptions to these guidelines are:

  • If you have a partially shaded yard.
  • If your garden is up against your house where heat is reflecting into it, or your garden is on gravel or a paved area, this will make the garden hold more heat and you may need to find shade at lower forecast temperatures.
  • Growing

    Is there anything that cannot be planted in an Avalow?

    Despite what you may have heard, money does not grow on trees, so we do not recommend planting your hard earned cash in the soil.
    Your Avalow is just like any other planter or pot, so as long as the plants you’ve selected do not outgrow the planter and you are regularly filling the reservoir and keeping the soil healthy, you should be able to grow anything that grows in your climate. To avoid harming the reservoir, we do not recommend transplanting or planting plants that have an existing root system larger than 6.”

    Can I grow from seeds?

    Yes! Seeds need to be top-watered to germinate. Keep the soil damp until your sprouts are 2 inches tall so that they have a chance to establish their roots and begin drawing water up from the reservoir.

    How do I plant new starts?

    New plants need to be top-watered so that they have a chance to establish their roots and begin drawing water up from the reservoir. Water at the base of each plant once a day in the morning for the first 10 days for best results.

    Can I plant my favorite flower bulbs?

    Yes! Bulbs need to be top-watered to germinate. Keep the soil damp until your sprouts are 2 inches tall so that they have a chance to establish their roots and begin drawing water up from the reservoir. If you are planting bulbs in the fall for spring, you do not need to top water during the rainy season because the Avalow will harvest (pull) the rain water into the reservoir and the soil will be moist.

    How big of a plant can be planted in an Avalow?

    We suggest you do not plant anything that has an existing root system over 4-6” in size. The root system will continue to grow once planted, expanding larger than 6,” which is okay and expected.

    Can I plant a tree or bush in my Avalow?

    Our watering system won't have any issues with it, but the balance and stability may be problematic once your tree or bush grow.

    How many plants should I plant?

    The number of plants does not matter as much as how much surface area they are taking up. We love planting so that plants may drape over the side or crawl up a trellis in the back of the Avalow, as well as grow on the bed’s two square feet of surface area. The Avalow performs best when the planter is dense with plants! An example of this would be a cucumber draped over the side, two pepper plants in the center of the bed, a tomato plant in the back climbing up a trellis and 1-2 herbs in the front of the bed. Shoot us an email at grow@avalow.com or DM us on Instagram @avalow, we would love to hear from you!

    What should I be doing in my garden?

    Check under the leaves of your plants and along stems for insects. Look for new holes (bite marks) in leaves. Check for new growth and changes in the color of leaves.
    New growth is a sign of healthy plants, whereas lack of growth and discolored leaves can indicate stress. Remove dead leaves from plants to keep everything humming along.

    My soil is really dry on top. Is this normal?

    Yes. The Avalow waters the plant below the soil surface level, decreasing evaporative losses to under 5%! Because the plants are drawing up the water from the reservoir, the surface will remain dry unless you add top water or it rains. Another benefit is that you won't have to weed your Avalow during the dry months - you will only get germination where you add water!
    The soil will remain dry in any area (even under the surface level) that does not have a plant present to draw up the water.

    It’s summer and my plants look wilted. Should I water them from the top?

    The majority of the time you will not need to top water your Avalow, and can actually hurt your garden by doing so. It can be tempting to top water when you see wilted plants in the heat of a summer day, but it is normal for your plants to wilt a bit in the afternoon and they will not benefit from top watering. Because the plants are pulling up water from the reservoir, watering established plants from the top will overwater your garden. Top watering regularly once plants are established can also speed the leaching of nutrients from your soil and cause soil compaction in the bed. If you are keeping your reservoir full and shading your plants appropriately, your plants should recover from wilting during hot summer days by the following morning.

    When should I top water?

    Germinating seeds: Seeds need to be top-watered to germinate. Keep the soil damp until your sprouts are 2 inches tall.
    Planting new plants: Water at the base of each plant once a day in the morning for the first 10 days for best results.
    Wilting: A plant may become too hot and will be unable to recover from the heat.
    Symptoms of this is a plant is wilting in the late evening/early morning. When this occurs, top water the base of the plant in the morning. We also suggest relocating the plant to a new location to assist the plant in further relief (avoiding the hot afternoon sun) and adding mulch to the base of the plant to help cool the soil temperature.

    Coaching

    What does your app help me do?

    The Avalow Coaching app gives you access to exclusive information about your garden and content we provide to get the most out of your season. You can also directly chat with our Grow team to answer any questions or worries you have with how your plants are growing in. If you document your progress through photos in the app, you get an awesome way to brag and it also allows us to provide detailed suggestions about best practices and preventative suggestions from our experts.

    When and why should I take photos in the app?

    If there is an insect you don’t recognize, if you have questions about when or how to harvest, if you would like recipe ideas, the Avalow team is here for you! We also love to hear about what you’re excited about in your garden! This will help us curate your coaching box for future seasons.

    How often can I have a video call with Avalow?

    Avalow Coaching offers a monthly video call and unlimited chat through the Avalow app.

    What should I expect in my coaching box?

    You will receive 5-6 plant starts, seeds, soil amendments and a surprise!

    What the cuss?! My coaching box arrived and the plants are all broken and dead. Does the delivery person hate plants?

    Yikes, now that is disappointing and frustrating! We have no idea how the delivery person feels about plants, but don’t worry, we’ve got your back. Email us at grow@avalow.com and attach a photo of the coaching box/plants and we will ship you a new box of plants within 24 business hours. We are sorry that you received a broken box!

    Will you send me new plants if I forget to plant them right away/was not home to receive the shipment and they all died?

    Unfortunately no. However, a new box can be purchased and we are happy to walk you through the planting process when it arrives!
    Shoot us an email at grow@avalow.com to schedule a complimentary video consultation, or chat with us on the Avalow app!