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Setting up a Drip Water Irrigation System

How to Create Your Own Self Watering System

Closeup of water dripping out from drip irrigation valve.

The drip water system is an easy self-watering irrigation system to set up. Even I use this method myself for some of my plants. Drip watering systems are far better for your plants than alternative watering systems such as sprinklers since they deliver the water directly to the soil. With this system, you can water your plants by simply turning on the water and letting it run for an hour or two. (TIP: make sure any pots that you are using have good drainage).

I’ve included some photos of my own DIY drip water system from over the years in this blog to show you how I water my plants with it.

Get Started

There are a couple of things you will need to get started making your system: a drill or push pins (or anything you can use to puncture the tube), something to cut the tube with, a hose or tubing, hose splitters and a hose cap. To enhance your system, you can add a timer (to control timing), stakes (to keep the hose in place) and a hose filter (to keep the lines clear). Then, to begin setting the system up, starting at the spigot, run the hose or tubing to the final pot or plant and attach a hose cap to the end of the hose.

Equipment needed to start home water irrigation project


Next Steps

For potted plants, after laying out the tubing or hose, starting at the last pot use splitters for every pot you want to be included. My preference is to use a four-way splitter in the two largest pots.

Next, cut the tubing at each pot and connect it to a splitter. From each splitter, cut another length of tubing to connect to each of the other pots and place a nozzle at the end of each tube. For non-potted plants, drill or puncture small holes into the hose or tubing at the desired locations for the water to come out of to sprinkle over your plants.

Diagram of how to place water drip irrigation alongside a house.

If your hose is buried under mulch or soil, be sure to flush your system at the beginning and end of each season by removing the hose caps and turning on the water.

Remember that infrequent full waterings are more efficient than more frequent but shorter ones. It’s important to check your system regularly for any breaks or tears and watch your plants for any signs that they are not getting enough water.

On super sunny and hot days, you may want to water for up to an hour. However, if we have a very wet week, I will often turn the water off until the pots are able to dry out. If leaves ever start to yellow, they are likely being overwatered.

If you need any additional help with your garden, reach out to us here at Selmi’s!


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