Your home garden might have so many lives in it, but it would never water itself. Your plants may try their best and stretch their leaves as far as they can, but it will not change anything.
We are not saying your plants try to water themselves, but we are not denying this either.
No matter how stressful watering a home garden seems to you, you cannot run away from it. But the good news is you can make the watering process easier.
Manually irrigating your garden can be a pain, but other home garden irrigation systems can make things easy for you.
We shall talk about the other types of irrigation systems you can use. We will discuss how you will set the system up, the advantages of each system, and a lot more.
If you stick around, we will cover more ground than you can water.
Drip Irrigation Systems
One of the advantages you get from using the drip irrigation system is that you save water. The water is delivered as drips to the soil’s surface at a controlled rate, so you won’t have to use too much water.
Apart from this, soil nutrients will not be lost too easily.
If you are using a drip irrigation system, you will need hoses or flexible pipes, valves, or drip emitters. You will form a network across the surface of the soil with them.
The drip emitters receive water through the pipe/hose and release water to the soil at a controlled rate.
You may choose to create your drip irrigation system, but get a ready-made kit saves you time. If you intend to buy a drip irrigation kit, one product you should look to buy is the Raindrip R560DP.
This product comes with a hose, emitters, nails, clips, and a timer. With the timer, you get to set how long the watering system runs and the frequency of watering. The Raindrip R560DP contains materials that can water about 20 plants.
So, if you are using have a small to medium-sized garden, one kit might just be enough for you.
You will not have a hard time setting this up. It comes with a thorough installation guide. The installation can be summarized in 4 steps:
- Connect the timer to the source of water
- Then connect the hose to the timer
- Place the supply pipes over the soil
- Connect the supply pipes to the hose, and now you are watering.
In case the kit cannot supply all the plants in your garden, you can extend it. All you need to do is buy extra hose/tubing and attach it to this system.
Sub-surface Irrigation System
To create a sub-surface irrigation system, you will have to bury drip pipes or drip tubes beneath the soil. The recommended depth is 20 to 30 cm below the surface of the soil.
This method of irrigation offers you many advantages. For instance, there is less chance of evaporation. Water gets to the root directly and is conserved.
Also, the adverse effects of surface irrigation are absent from this method.
For your subsurface irrigation system, you will need a water pump, valves, a pressure gauge, and drip tubes. Here again, the Raindrip R560DP drip tube will come in handy. Then for your water pump, you should check the Superior Pump 91250.
This pump is quite efficient, and it can pump water as high as 25 feet with the capacity to pump up to 2000 gallons in 1 hour.
Sprinklers come with a lot of ease. After installing the sprinkler system, all you need to do is turn the water on and watch the sprinkler sprinkle.
In this method, you will need a network of pipes. These pipes will be connected to sprinklers, and the pipes will be filled with water by the action of a pumping machine.
As water is pumped through the pipes by the pumping machine, they get to the sprinklers and release the water into the air to fall on the soil.
Sprinklers might come with the ease of automation, but it is not all suitable. For one, you should not use sprinklers with large nozzles for crops that can be damaged by drops of water.
The outcome would not impress you.
The good news is that you can use sprinklers on sloped and flatlands. But with sloped lands, the piping system has to be laid to ensure uniform pressure in all pipes.
Sprinklers will work with all types of soil. But the best time to consider it is when your garden has sandy soil. One very important thing is to only use clean water with sprinklers.
If you use unclean water, you risk blocking the nozzle of the sprinkler with sediments from the water.
As far as sprinklers go, the Melnor 65078-AMZ Sprinkler is one that will soak you in satisfaction. This product comes from Melnor, the company that made the first functional oscillating sprinkler over 60 years ago.
You can get it in any of 4 designs: the 1-way, 2-way, 2-way with timer, and 3-way adjustment.
The 3-way adjustment design has a coverage of up to 4500 feet, that’s a pretty broad range. You can also adjust the range if you want.
But the range is not the only thing you can control. You can control the width and the flow too.
With the Melnor 65078-AMZ Sprinkler, you should have less fear about your nozzle getting blocked by sediments. The sprinkler is fitted with a filter that removes dirt from the water before it gets to the nozzle.
Manual Irrigation Systems
Manual irrigation systems are always quite simple to operate, and they come without technical equipment too. Of course, the absence of technical equipment means that it will cost you less than the other types of irrigation systems.
Well, it will cost you less financially, but it may cost you more in terms of labor. Although they are cheap, manual irrigation systems are very effective for watering your garden.
A manual irrigation system can be as simple as a hose or a watering can. It could also be simple drip irrigation made with a tank and hoses.
There are many manual home garden irrigation systems out there, but we shall discuss a few common ones.
- Hose – the manual hose watering system is somewhat straightforward. You connect your hose to a source of water then you connect this hose a suitable sprinkler.
You let the water run from the source through the hose. Then the water escapes through the nozzle while you walk the length of your garden watering the plants.
You should check out the Flexzilla Garden Hose if you prefer to water your home garden with a hose. It comes in 7 different lengths up to 100 foot and 2 diameters: 5/8 inches and ½ inches. Your labor is less with the Flexzilla Garden Hose because it is lightweight.
Heavier hoses will cause your arm to hurt, but a lightweight hose will feel much better. The hose is flexible and durable too.
- Watering Can – the watering can is also straightforward, but you will walk the length of your garden too. To use the watering can, you fill it with water, and then you move around the garden watering the plants with water from the can. You should get a can big enough to carry water for your garden else you may have to refill the can frequently.
The Novelty MFG 30301 Watering Can has a 2-gallon capacity and is durable. It is made from plastic, and although the plastic is durable, it is also lightweight. This makes it comfortable to carry while watering.
- Pitcher Irrigation – with this type of irrigation, you have to dig a hole in the ground. This hole should be in the shape of a basin or a pot and measure 1 – 2 foot in diameter. Now, after digging the hole, you may choose to fill it water directly, or you may place a perforated clay pot in it and fill that with water.
For both options, you have to cover to prevent evaporation. A perforated clay pot would hold the water longer so you won’t have to refill frequently. But you will have to fill the hole or the pot with water routinely.
- Bottle Irrigation – the bottle irrigation method is much like the pitcher irrigation. The main difference is instead of using a clay pot or a hole, you use a bottle. You fill a bottle with water then insert it into the soil upside down.
With this method, the rate at which the water leaves the bottle is determined by the soil. So, if you have been watering the soil well enough, the water in the bottle should last longer.
Rather than just let the bottle leak through its mouth, you can use drippers. Drippers help control the flow of water from the bottle better. One top quality dripper is the Motansun Plant Watering Spikes.
The pack comes with 15 pieces of drippers, so you can cover 15 plants with one pack. The drippers come in multiple colors and can work with most kinds of bottles.
Soaker-Hose Irrigation Systems
Soaker-hose irrigation is quite similar to drip irrigation. In fact, some people might even consider the soaker-hose irrigation method a type of drip irrigation method. But there is a difference.
Drip Irrigation only releases water at fixed points through the emitters. Soaker-hose irrigation, on the other hand, releases water all the way. The main similarity here is that they both use flexible pipes and release water on the soil at the base of the plant.
Both methods also preserve water and nutrient, and they can be controlled.
The Raindrip 015005T soaker hose is cost-effective. But this is not even the best part of this product. It is 50-foot long and has a ¼-inch diameter.
After buying the Raindrip 015005T, you will need a female hose/connector to connect it to the hose that connects to the source of water.
While using your soaker hose, it is recommended that you pump water through it at 30 psi or less. Higher pressures may not damage it immediately, but in the long run, the shelf-life may reduce.
Surface Irrigation Systems
Surface irrigation systems are commonly used. The prevalence of the surface irrigation system maybe because they are semi-manual.
Gravity does the job for you, so you do not need a pump or technical equipment. But you will still have to put in some effort in this type of irrigation system.
What makes surface irrigation systems different from irrigation systems is that the soil carries the water to the plants. Unlike other systems where you use a hose, pipes, pumps, and the likes, surface irrigation only needs the soil.
There are 3 main types of surface irrigation systems. They are basin irrigation, border irrigation, and furrow irrigation.
If you want to use this method of irrigation, you should know it works best with gentle slopes. In this method, you flood the land with water, and then you create a ridge around the water to hold it in place.
This method is not the best for coarse soil and soils that become hard when dry. It is best suited for clay and loamy soil because they wouldn’t get waterlogged easily.
This irrigation method is like advanced basin irrigation. In border irrigation, you have strips of plantation with flooded areas between them.
The flooded area serves as the border between the strips of plantations. Hence the name border irrigation. In border irrigation, you have to build the bay shallower but longer than that of basin irrigation.
Furrow irrigation method requires you to do more work than you will have to do with basin and border irrigation. In this method, you have beds/strips of plantation with trenches between.
You can space the beds by 1 – 3 feet. The size of the space between the beds determines the size of the trench and the volume of water you will need for irrigation.
These trenches are filled with water in the direction of the slope of the land. While this method is okay, you will find that the earlier parts of the row get more water than the other parts.
You should consider some factors before getting your home garden irrigation system. Some of these factors are the size of your garden, water conservation, and cost.
The drip and subsurface irrigation will help conserve water, but they are not the cheapest.
The manual irrigation systems are relatively inexpensive but are not the best for large gardens. The surface irrigation system work for large areas but can be labor-intensive. So, the choice is yours.