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Homesteading and Livestock

Self-reliance and sustainability in the 21st century.


A Better Garden Next Year

By Heidi Hunt


Tags: irrigation, garden, gardening,

drip irigationIt’s August and my backyard vegetable garden is looking ragged to say the least. Part of the problem is laziness on my part. Each spring I am so excited about getting the seeds and seedlings into the ground that I don’t take the extra weekend time to set up a watering system that would make my life so much easier all summer long.

Drip irrigation is truly the way to go for both the health of the plants and the health of the planet, as it uses so much less water than sprinklers or hand watering. It does take a bit of planning to set out the drip irrigation or soaker hose lines. But the ease with which you will be able to irrigate your garden for the rest of the season is definitely worth the time and effort.

So, I’m sketching a plan NOW where I will need to put the lines next spring. I’m hoping to discover a sale at a local garden store this fall and be able to save money on the irrigation supplies as well as saving water next summer.

paul gardener
9/17/2008 11:13:04 AM

Setting up my small scale irrigation (It's not really drip, but much more efficient than sprinklers or flooding.) is what's made the difference for me as a successful home grower. It allows me to still have a full time job, and sometimes get caught up in life without the worry of whether the plants are getting water. It's on a timer, but can be manually overrided whenever I need. If you have the time to water by hand, that's great but most of us don't. I'm all for this! P~ http://apaetoday.blogspot.com


ed sauer
8/30/2008 2:19:45 AM

Ollas seem like a good idea, except here, in southeastern PA, where mosquitos can carry, and transmit, West Nile virus. In my county, and the adjacent one, there have been dozens of confirmed cases over the past couple of years. Ollas amount to standing water.....mosquito loveshacks. I'm with Ms. Hunt....planning the drip irri system now, with a timer (lazy? Nah, I say "efficient").


barbara pleasant_3
8/29/2008 6:47:10 AM

For folks who don't know what an olla is, here's a link with pictures. http://urbanhomestead.org/journal/2008/03/24/using-ollas/ At $25 each, ollas aren't a cheap way to go, but could be cost-efficient in the long run in the right kind of garden.


kristenm
8/27/2008 5:03:38 PM

You may also want to look into using ollas. They work even better than drip irrigation and may cost less.