How to Use Drip Irrigation in a Garden


Drip irrigation is a more efficient way to water flowers, trees, bushes and vegetable gardens. According to Colorado State University, drip irrigation systems can exceed 90 percent efficiency, compared to the 50 to 70 percent efficiency of sprinkler systems, and this can sometimes make them exempt from watering restrictions during periods of drought. Drip irrigation systems are also known as micro-irrigation technology. They're ideal for use in odd-shaped garden areas, and they make sure water is steadily supplied to the roots of your plants instead of being wasted. Originally used primarily for commercial applications and in arid regions of the United States, drip irrigation is increasing in popularity around the U.S.

Step 1

Attach a battery-operated controller to the water faucet valve if you plan to use one. A controller allows for automated, scheduled watering of your garden.

Step 2

Attach the backflow preventer to your controller so water, contamination and debris are unable to re-enter your water line.

Step 3

Attach the pressure regulator to your backflow preventer to ensure the system maintains low and even water pressure.

Step 4

Attach the filter to the pressure regulator to ensure clean water is being delivered to your garden.

Step 5

Attach a tubing adapter to your filter if needed so your drip tubing will fit.

Step 6

Attach up to 200 feet of drip tubing.

Step 7

Turn on the water to flush the system, then adjust the pressure as needed and attach the drip tubing cap.

Step 8

Lay your drip tubing alongside vegetable garden rows, near the root ball of bushes and plants, or through flower beds, and adjust the position as needed. Leave it laying on top of the ground so no damage or clogs occur, and stake it down to hold it in place.

Step 9

Use drip plugs to plug any drip holes that are not near plant root balls so that water is not wasted.

Things You'll Need

  • Controller (optional)
  • Backflow preventer
  • Pressure regulator
  • Filter
  • Tubing adapter
  • Drip tubing
  • Drip plugs


  • Colorado State University: Drip Irrigation for Home Gardens
  • University of Rhode Island: Healthy Landscapes: Drip Irrigation
Keywords: using drip irrigation, drip irrigation for gardens, how to use drip watering