Drip irrigation can help you save lots of money on gardening; it can cut down water usage by half. Drip irrigation systems may initially cost more to set up than ordinaryl watering systems such as sprinklers, but in the long run you’ll save more in terms of expenses.
In its most primary form, a drip system holds a network of hoses and emitters that deliver a slow trickle of water to exact spots all over the garden. Really simple kits for home gardens start as low as $15 and are available through garden centers, seed catalogs, and drip equipment suppliers like. For a more complete drip system, you can call upon your local extension agent, irrigation store, or drip system manufacturer to help you plan the most efficient set up for your yard and gardens.
DIY Drip System
Before spending money on a commercial drip irrigation system, try constructing your own. Scour auctions, flea markets, and yard sale for great buys on 3/8 inch garden hose (buy adequate feet of hose to get to all the plants to be watered). Going to the hardware store for end caps and three-way connectors gives you all you require for the system. Use one length of hose to connect the system to the faucet. With the three-way connectors, lay out the other hoses to get to all the thirsty plants. When the hoses are in place, use a nail or ice pick to poke a hole all the way through the hose in each spot where you want water to emerge. To produce the slow, steady trickle effect, tie 1 X 6-inch strips of old rags around the holes. Prior to turning on the water, put the hose end caps in place.
Drip Systems Made From Recycled Plastics
An even cheaper way to enjoy the benefits of drip irrigation is to place containers of water around individual plants and allow the water trickle out slowly into the root zone. Unglazed clay pots, having their drainage holes plugged, can be buried in the garden up to their rims. Water would pass through the porous clay into the surrounding soil. Tin cans with holes poked round the bottom and sunk into the soil would release water slowly and steadily. Plastic gallon milk jugs with holes or PET bottles along the bottom edge can be set next to plants to give above-ground trickles of water. Each time you want to give your plants a drink, just fill the containers with water.