How to Irrigate Using Rain Barrels


Rain barrels allow you to catch the water run-off from your roof to irrigate your garden plants. The water is stored in the barrel until you are ready to use it, the barrel forming a barrier that keeps out insects and debris. Rain barrels help you save money on your water bill and are especially important in areas with dry summers and drought concerns. Irrigating with your rain barrel allows you to get the most use from the water with the least hassle.

Step 1

Screw the garden hose onto the faucet on the side of the barrel. Turn the tap on momentarily to check for leaks around the hose, then turn it off.

Step 2

Remove the hose and wrap the faucet with plumber's tape if the connection leaked. Replace the hose and wrap another length of plumber's tape around the connection to ensure a tight seal.

Step 3

Turn on the tap and a fill a watering can with the hose. Use the watering can to irrigate potted plants instead of the hose, as hose watering these may lead to wasting the collected water.

Step 4

Attach the hose to a drip irrigation hose. Lay this in vegetable beds and flower beds that require deep watering. Turn the tap on.

Step 5

Check the moisture levels in the bed frequently while irrigating. Once the soil is evenly moist to the depth of one finger, turn off the faucet.

Things You'll Need

  • Plumber's tape (optional)
  • Hose
  • Watering can
  • Drip irrigation hose


  • Texas A&M Extension: Saving From A Rainy Day
Keywords: rain irrigation, using rain barrels, garden water

About this Author

Jenny Harrington is a freelance writer of more than five years' experience. Her work has appeared in "Dollar Stretcher" and various blogs. Previously, she owned her own business for four years, selling handmade items online, wholesale and via the crafts fair circuit. Her specialties are small business, crafting, decorating and gardening.