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Installing a Drip Irrigation System

| Articles | September 3, 2012

If you’re looking for ways to keep your garden watered without wasting too

much time and money, you’ve probably gone through a lot of options in your

mind. Maybe you’ve considered a sprinkler, a hose, or a good old-fashioned

watering can. All of these methods might be convenient, but most of the

time you will end up wasting water on plants that don’t need any more. If

you live in a drought stricken area like I do, you know that every bit of

water counts. I ended up getting a drip irrigation system. I haven’t

regretted this decision at all.

When you install a drip irrigation system, you can choose one of two

varieties: above ground and below ground. The above ground version drips

small amounts of water continuously onto the ground, and allows it to soak

in. It is all regulated from a pressure controller, which ensures that the

water just comes out at a drip instead of a spray or a stream. These

pressure regulators are very inexpensive. The whole drip system can be set

up with a pressure regulator and a garden hose with holes poked in it

(although it is ideal for you to get a pipe designed for this type of use,

I’ve found that the hose method works acceptably).

The underground system is a bit more of a pain to install and maintain.

But if you’re really into the aesthetic aspect of your garden and don’t

want any visible watering system, then you might consider it worth it.

It’s essentially the same as the above ground version, only a small trench

is dug for the hose or pipe prior to any planting. This allows the water

direct access to the roots for the most watering efficiency. Plus, you can

impress your neighbors by having a beautiful garden without ever going

outside to water it! They’ll be baffled.

To choose between the two systems, you need to take several things into

account. Do you have the same plant layout year round? If it is always

changing, you probably won’t want to bury your hose. It can be a pain to

dig it up and re-align it with all your new plants every year or so. Even

if your plant layout never changes, you need to consider how much you

really mind seeing a hose in your garden. If it really bothers you to the

extent that you’re willing to work for a few hours to get rid of it, then

by all means bury it. But otherwise I would suggest staying above ground

if for nothing else than the convenience of repairing and rearranging.

One of the main advantages of the drip irrigation system is its

efficiency. Instead of spraying large amounts of water willy-nilly like a

hose does, it makes the most of your precious water by putting it exactly

where it is needed. It can also provide your garden with constant

watering, instead of just having to go thirsty whenever you’re not around

to water it.

So if you’re looking for an easy, cheap, convenient, and efficient

alternative watering method, you should go out to the gardening store

today and purchase the necessary items to install a drip irrigation

system. I think you’ll be surprised at how much easier it is to maintain a

garden after you have it.

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