Supplier Spotlight: WaterUps From Down Under®

We’d like to introduce you to one of our newest suppliers, WaterUps from Down Under®. Their innovative water wicking solution can reduce your garden beds’ water consumption by up to 80%, while helping your plants thrive.


Grow Your Own Water

Water is life. So, in some of the driest conditions we’ve experienced, WaterUps from Down Under® offer a truly disruptive solution to water conservation for avid gardeners in our arid country. Whether it’s for your home garden, school or community garden, WaterUps® can help reduce your garden beds’ water consumption by 80%. (Yes, it’s worth restating. 80%! That’s a huge saving!)

This means you, your school or your community could potentially water 5 times as many garden beds as you do now using the same amount of water you’re using today! Or, simply save water.

Keep in mind that water restrictions are already in place in our region and sprinklers are already prohibited from use, unless you have a permit. More severe restrictions may come into place over summer due to the worst drought conditions in decades and falling dam levels.

In all conditions, WaterUps® garden beds offer consistent water levels. And, you only have to fill the water wicking garden bed’s reservoir at extended intervals. And, having the water reservoir under the soil encourages stronger root growth which leads to healthier and more disease resistant plants.

WaterUps® are modular too, so you can use as many or as few as you need. You can cut them to size if you want to retrofit one into a circular pot, or extend water wicking to a tricky corner in a raised garden bed.


Who’s Using Them?

Their water saving properties and sustainable design (they’re made from recycled plastic) means that you’ll find WaterUps from Down Under® in use in kitchen gardens, sustainable school gardens, permaculture gardens and farms, in market and rooftops gardens and community gardens across the country.

More and more people want to grow their own food. With the food you grow yourself, you know the provenance, you know whether  your food is totally organic, and, there are no food miles to calculate. WaterUps® wicking cells are  booster modules for healthy eating.

WaterUps® help create set and forget, self-watering garden beds, with no moving parts, that require infrequent topping up. In addition to reducing water consumption, they also reduce the time that needs to be spent on watering itself – this is of great interest to councils and other organisations with several garden beds and locations to manage.

Keep in mind that you can use them to support ornamental as well as edible plants. As dry conditions persist, they’re a great way to keep your more fragile plants hydrated.

Sustainable Design

WaterUps® wicking cells are manufactured from recycled polypropylene. Where other wicking mediums like sand and gravel require dredging or mining to create them, WaterUps® use readily available recyclable plastic. No dynamite required.


When we are lucky enough to get a decent rain, it soaks right in, down to the wicking cells. Plants drink what they need as gravity takes the rainwater down to the wicking cells. Then, after the rain, when plants are thirsty, they wick water from the wicking cells, like mini rainwater tanks. Simple, but very effective.

When you’re ready to create an edible space, save water and grow great food, consider WaterUps®.

WaterUps from Down Under®

Ian Collins and Vince Hunt co-founded WaterUps from Down Under® in 2014. Ian grew up on an orchard near Orange, NSW.  Vince is a practising permaculture designer with over 40 years of experience working on urban and rural landscaping and garden designs. They were both excited by the prospect of helping avid gardeners save water sustainably.

In 2016, after an initial design phase involving multiple prototypes they were ready to take WaterUps® wicking cells made from recycled plastic to market. At this stage they engaged the services of keen gardener, Bob Stevenson to help with commercialising the venture.

Their business continues to grow with ongoing R&D and field trials being conducted on Vince’s permaculture farm and WaterUps® research facility near Byron Bay.

WaterUps® modular wicking cells are a truly disruptive technology within garden irrigation and well worth considering for any productive garden beds.

We enjoy working with accredited landscape architects and designers and innovative, environmentally conscious landscape professionals like Outside Space. They see the environmental value of our technology and have the vision and practical landscaping knowhow to pioneer new applications and great solutions for their clients.”

 Ian Collins, CEO

Affiliations and Accreditations

WaterUps® wicking cells are recognised and accredited by an increasing number of government, industry and regulatory bodies for the sustainable nature of their product.

Like Outside Space, WaterUps® are members of the Master Landscaper’s Association, encouraging professional standards within our industry. WaterUps are also affiliated with the Australian Association for Environmental Education, Australia’s peak professional body for environmental educators. They’re also an approved Key Supporter of Permaculture Australia and partner with the Australian City Farms and Community Garden Network (ACFCGN). This network represents over 660 urban farms and community growing groups.



Sustainable School Gardens

We first worked with WaterUps® water wicking modules when installing a wellness garden for Mission Australia. More recently, we completed a sustainable school garden at St Brigid’s Catholic Primary School near Wollongong. The school community was thrilled with their new garden beds, consisting of a series of WaterUps® wicking beds.

Flourishing after 2 months
Flourishing after 2 months

The staff and students at St Brigid’s are looking forward to enjoying healthy food, grown sustainably, for years to come.


We have the good fortune to work with a number of award winning landscape architects and designers. As you can see from the above, we also enjoy working with some impressive suppliers as well. We’re looking forward to installing WaterUps® wicking modules in many more gardens. They’re a great Australian product that make so much sense in Australia’s dry conditions.

Want to improve the water efficiency of your garden? Want to grow more of your own food? Have something new in mind for your outside space? Feel free to get in touch.