Drip irrigation is a great way to use less water while getting the water to where you want it. When we started last year at Viola's garden, one of the first things we did was install a drip irrigation system. Tod, our expert gardener, set up all the lines and has been accommodating and installing more lines to irrigate new areas of the garden as we expand. This year, we have changed the garden set up a bit and put in a new bed so Tod thought it would be a good idea for me to try it out as I personally have never installed drip irrigation and would love to learn how. Here is my first attempt at installing drip irrigation.
Since I haven't done this before, the whole thing feels a bit overwhelming to me. I went to Orchard supply and stared at the 50 some odd sections with these tiny fittings that say things like 1gph, 1/4" in-line dripper, etc. They are cute little things but how was I going to parse it all?!?! Luckily, I met this really helpful woman at Orchard supply that spent some time explaining things to me. The first piece of advice she told me was that "there is no right way to do this, you can put it together in so many different ways to get water to where you need it" Perfect - just what I needed to hear - I didn't have to do it a certain way. So I have posted what I did below. I thought my experience may be helpful to some reader as you may be like me and know the benefits but never actually installed it yourself. Just remember, there is no right way to do this!
I already had a supply line thanks to our existing irrigation. It is a brown colored tube that takes water from the water source to a number of feet out but doesn't have any holes in it. I could either attach another tube to the end of this supply line or put holes in the supply line wherever I need them. It looks like this (see brown colored tube):
Then I got a little gadget that punctures holes into the tube. I used a little 'connector' that connects and seals the hole I just punctured into the tube to another '1/4" dripper' line that I wanted to use. A 'dripper' line already has holes preset. This worked for what I wanted because it was already approximately the spacing for veggies in a bed. I passed the dripper line under my bed so you don't see it. The very end of the dripper line I folded over to make a kink and taped it to hold (I even used the tape that came with the dripper hose). That's it! Here is what it looks like all finished.
The rocks are simply helping the hose lay flat since they come coiled up and need some time to unwind. It really was pretty easy to install. Btw, 1gph means 1gallon per hour. There are a number of different levels, 1gph, 2gph, 4gph to control how much water is released.