Buying a fancy drip irrigation system is one way to go. But it’ll cost you. Instead, consider a DIY drip irrigation system. Either way, you’ll need to spend time installing irrigation, so why not save a few bucks, too?
Benefits of drip irrigation
You’ve got a hose or a sprinkler, so why invest time and effort into building a DIY drip irrigation system?
Here are the advantages of this type of watering system:
- Less water waste. Water doesn’t evaporate as readily with a drip irrigation system.
- Targeted watering. Because the tubing is close to plant roots, water gets right to where it needs to go—which means less waste and higher efficiency watering.
- Less disease spread. With drip irrigation, water is unlikely to splash onto plant foliage. That means fewer chances for contaminated soil to spread pathogens.
- Easy watering. Once installed, an irrigation system makes watering incredibly easy. No more lugging around a heavy hose. You can even install a timer and have the system work completely on its own.
- Fewer weeds. Because water goes right to plant roots, weeds are less likely to grow between plants.
DIY drip irrigation systems
You’ll need to spend a bit of money on materials to build your DIY drip irrigation system, but the initial cost is worth it, considering how much time you’ll save down the line.
Here are some ideas for creating DIY drip irrigation systems:
- PVC pipes: Modern Farmer has a great step-by-step tutorial for creating this kind of drip system.
- Soda bottles: This is an easy drip irrigation system for the frugal gardener that costs next to nothing. It’s a great option for small space gardeners. Here’s a video on how to use soda bottles to create a cheap drip irrigation system:
- Rain barrel system: Here’s a video that shows you how to use a rain barrel in a drip irrigation system to minimize water waste:
- Bucket: Got a bucket? You’re in luck! You can build a simple DIY drip irrigation system easily. This video shows how you can pair drip tape or tubing with buckets to create a low-tech irrigation system that doesn’t require a hookup to a nearby water source:
This setup is even simpler:
Steph Coelho is a freelance writer gardening in zone 5b. She is a certified Square Foot Gardener and has taught various garden-related workshops. When she’s not digging in the dirt or writing, she’s cooking up fresh produce, running, or listening to her favorite podcasts.