How to Auto Water Plants

Overview

Some plants--such as many succulents--thrive on a small amount of water, while other plants--such as water lilies--must have their roots submerged in water to live. As every gardener learns, sufficient watering is the key to keeping a healthy lawn and garden. However, supplying different plants with different levels of moisture can become a complicated process. To solve this problem, more and more gardeners and landscape professionals are using drip irrigation and timers to provide different water levels to different plants. Drip irrigation systems and equipment are widely available on the Internet and in garden centers.

Step 1

Divide garden or landscape into different sections or "zones" that have the same water requirements. For example, categorize or place succulents in one zone and fruit trees in another zone.

Step 2

Add timers to a water source that can be programmed to deliver water to each zone at the appropriate time. Some timers have only one outlet and deliver to only one zone, while others may have several outlets that can be programmed. Also, an adapter with several outlets can be attached to the main water source so that several timers can be attached to the adapter. If you have more than one water source in different locations around the garden, you can add timers to each water source. Most timers have a bypass option, so you can attach a water hose and continue to use the outlet if needed.

Step 3

Lay main water lines or tubing from the timers to the planting beds. Tubing can be buried in the ground or covered with mulch. The tubing is used to deliver water to whatever the final source of water delivery will be--such as drip tape or water dribbler attachments. These attachments are easily added to the main water line by a simple attachment process where a point on the dribbler or tape adapter is inserted directly into the water line.

Step 4

Attach drip tape, dribblers or another final delivery source for the water to the main water line. The delivery outlet or irrigation tape should be placed as close as possible to the root zone of the plants you would like to automatically water.

Step 5

Test the system for leaks and to make sure it is working properly. Fix any leaks and double-check the timer programming.

Things You'll Need

  • Irrigation timer
  • Drip irrigation hose
  • Drip irrigation dribblers or irrigation tape
  • Drip irrigation adapters
  • Water outlet

References

  • Clemson Cooperative: Timers & Controllers
  • Learn About: Garden Irrigation
  • Colorado State: Drip Irrigation for Home Gardens
Keywords: drip irrigation, auto water, plant watering automatically

About this Author

Based in Rockdale Texas, Jim Gober has been writing garden-related articles for 25 years. His articles appear in several Texas newspapers including The Rockdale Reporter, The Lexington Leader, The Cameron Herald and The Hearne Democrat. He is a Master Gardener and Certified Texas Nursery and Landscape Professional. He holds bachelor degrees in English Writing from St. Edward's University and Finance from Lamar University.