Sunday, February 15, 2009
Tristan and I will be installing our first drip irrigation system this year. Last year we watered by hand, and not only is that a pain, but it wastes a lot of water (due to evaporation and runoff). The downside to drip irrigation is mainly cost, and our impermanence in this garden as renters. The landlady may choose to buy the improvements from us, but she very well may not. We decided that it's worth it to save the time and the water, plus the learning experience. We spent about $35 today on 300' of 1/4" tubing and a few parts, and will spend a bit more on larger tubing. (We think we some some at the re-store, so we're hoping to get a deal on that part.) Could we maybe get some of this stuff for free? Probably, but this is complicated enough as it is, and it's a large garden, so we're going with regular old store-bought components on this one. It's not a prohibitively expensive undertaking anyway.
The tubing we bought does not have holes in it (cheaper). So Tristan slapped together a jig to hold the tubing and measure 1 foot intervals, and we drilled holes in the stuff. The next step will be to procure 1/2" tubing and connect everything together. Then we can test it out and see how it works! I'm guessing this shouldn't take us more than a few hours to put together.
This project is a little bit daunting for us because we don't know a lot about water flow and, you know, physics. But we found some helpful information online, at www.irrigationtutorials.com and http://www.dripirrigation.com/drip_tutorial.php. After a little reading, it doesn't seem so impossible. There will definitely be more drip discussion to come.