How to Make & Install a Drip Irrigation System


Drip irrigation systems are perfect for flower gardens, vegetable gardens and other areas where spray systems are too large. In addition, drip irrigation conserves water, and delivers moisture directly to the roots of the plants. By placing mulch or stone over the small drip line hoses, the entire system is virtually invisible. All the materials necessary to make a drip irrigation system are readily available and inexpensive. With a bit of planning and a few tools, make and install your own drip irrigation system in less than a day.

Step 1

Determine where the emitters must be placed. Emitters are the attachments that release water into your garden. Emitters should be placed around clusters of plants, at intervals determined by the distance between plants. Note how many emitters are needed, and what type. Spray emitters reach taller, more spread-out plants. Bubblers are good for small clusters of plants.

Step 2

Estimate how many feet of tubing are needed, using a tape measure. Add an additional 10 feet to your total.

Step 3

Lay out the tubing according to your design. Begin by attaching a hose fitting to the end of the tubing closest to your hose bib. Then lay out the tubing, placing a hold-down stake every 3 feet. Use more stakes on curves.

Step 4

Create a hole where each emitter will be placed, using the hole punch. Insert the emitters by pushing them down firmly into the hole.

Step 5

Cut away excess tubing with the tubing cutter, and install a cap on the end of the tubing to complete your drip irrigation system.

Step 6

Attach a garden hose to the hose fitting, and to your hose bib. Turn on the water and check your system for leaks or other problems.

Tips and Warnings

  • Keep hands out from beneath the hole punch when it is being used.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • Drip line tubing
  • Emitters
  • Hold-down stakes
  • Tubing hole punch
  • Tubing cutter
  • Tubing hose adapter
  • Tubing cap


  • Irrigation Tutorials
  • Drip Irrigation for Home Gardens
  • Drip Line Tutorials
Keywords: drip irrigation system, install drip irrigation, drip line tubing

About this Author

Lisa Larsen has been a professional writer for 18 years. She has written radio advertisement copy, research papers, SEO articles, magazine articles for "BIKE," "USA Today" and "Dirt Rag," newspaper articles for "Florida Today," and short stories published in Glimmer Train and Lullwater Review, among others. She has a master's degree in education, and is a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars.