Are you wondering how to install drip irrigation for your yard and potted plants? In this article, I’ll show you how we installed drip irrigation for our citrus trees, potted plants, and regularly planted plants
Drip irrigation is such a simple installation and so easy to modify to add or remove any plants afterwards. We had several potted plants on our deck that I had been hand watering for about a year when I decided that I need to add drip irrigation before we went on an extended vacation.
Best Drip Irrigation System to Install
After doing a quick search to find out which brands people recommended, I kept reading about Rainbird. It kept coming up as a reliable brand
They are a big name in regular irrigation products as well, so it makes sense that they would come up with this as well. I also wanted to make sure whichever brand I chose was easy to find locally. The local Home Depot carries all the Rain Bird drip irrigation supplies which was a win win for me. Lowe’s doesn’t carry the brand, just so you know.
Rain bird has several starter kits that have many different fitting for just starting out.
I chose the Rain Bird Landscape and Garden Micro Spray Watering Kit since it had everything I need to start my system and I also added a Rain Bird Electronic Hose Timer which would water everything on a timer for set times on set days for a set duration.
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Installing drip system
To begin the install I recommend unrolling the ½ tubing and lay it in the sun for about 10 minutes. This will allow it to get softer and more pliable, which will be easier to place it where you need.
Once the tubing has gotten softer, start placing it near the faucet you want to use. Roll it out to area you want to cover.
Within the pack is a pressure regulator and connector to the ½ tubing.
Connect the hose timer directly to the faucet, followed by the pressure regulator and then the ½ tube connector.
Finally slip the ½ tubing in to the connector and then twist to secure it.
Now you can start staking the ½ tubing to keep it in place in your flower beds. If you need a longer length of ½ tubing, you can buy 50ft, 100ft or 500ft.
Within the kit are several ½ tubing connectors such as a two way, three way or four way.
If you need to cut the tubing a pvc cutter seems to do well. You should keep each faucet zone to less than 200 linear feet of ½ tubing.
I have a two way splitter on my faucet with two different timers which allows me to add more than 200 linear feet since they are different zones.
Once you have the length of ½ tubing you need, you can cap it off with the ½ end closure.
Now you’re ready to start adding your ¼ tubing to your flowers, trees or shrubs.
Within the kit, their is a tool to puncture the ½ tubing to add the different emitters. There are many different emitters that put out different amounts of water.
Their handy installation sheet shows how much water per week different types of plants need.
That’s the hardest part of the installation, figuring out which emitter to use for each flower. The kit includes 25 ft of ¼ tubing. I ended up getting these emitters for the trees and shrubs since they didn’t seem to be getting enough water during the first two weeks.
They do a much better job of putting out more water for the citrus trees.
I actually needed more, so I bought another 50 ft of ¼ tubing. Once you have placed the ¼ tubing and emitters into your plants, now you can check that everything is working correctly.
There is a water now button that you can push that will go for 10 minutes allowing you to inspect each emitter. Once you’ve made sure everything is working correctly, you can now cover up the ½ tubing.
In my case, I had some tubing across a gravel path that I wanted to hide. I simply moved a couple of inches of gravel away, staked the ½ tubing then moved the gravel over the tubing to hide it. Unless you look closely, you can’t see the tubing anymore.
The great thing about the drip irrigation system is the low cost for the components and that you can do it yourself.
The entire install including going back to the store to get more tubing and emitters was about two hours.
How much to install irrigation system
The total cost for all components to cover over 250 feet of irrigation for my backyard and deck area with two separate timers was less than $200.
Including going to Home Depot, it took me less than two hours to get everything installed for my 250 feet area.