gessieviolet wrote: Linda, I don't see how you would have a wicking effect below the 6 inch level, if I understand what you are saying.
The soil mix on the sides of the colander wicks the water and your water is lower than you mix isn't it? When the colander touches the bottom of the bucket all the water can be wicked. If the edge of colander wedges against the bucket right above the hole there would be nothing in the colander space as the water would only go to level of the overflow hole, no mix would be in contact with water to act as a wick, would it?
If you moved the overflow hole higher up you would have a wick as long as the water was in contact with the soil mix, but once the water gets lower than the bottom edge of the colander the wicking stops and only if the roots grew down into the water would the water be available to the plant.