How to install drip irrigation

Instructions how to install drip irrigation in 3 easy steps. Download the pdf for a step by step guide of your project.

Step 1: Water Pipes

First determine which type of connection to the water source is best for you. There are typically three sources of water to which you can connect.

  1. The outdoor faucet. This is the best option for watering small planters, beds, patios or pots. This method is the quickest and easiest way to connect.
  2. A 1/2” sprinkler riser. If you already have an underground sprinkler system installed near your garden beds, you can easily convert one of the sprinkler head risers to a supply source for your drip irrigation.
  3. An automatic irrigation valve. This type of connection will enable your system to be operated by an automatic timer.

Step 2: Distribution

To distribute the water you have to lay the blue stripe 1/2” and/or 1/4” tubing out in a network of main and branch lines in order to irrigate the plants. The layout and type of tubing will depend on the size, spacing, location and type of plants you need to water. The water source will determine the method of connection and how your distribution network should be assembled and laid out.

If connecting to an outdoor faucet: simply insert one end of blue stripe drip 1/2” tubing or 1/2” tubing with preinstalled emitters into the 1/2” tubing connector swivel.

If connecting to an existing sprinkler riser or new valve: you will need pvc or poly pipe, pvc riser, 1/2” pvc tee, blue stripe drip 1/2” blue stripe tubing with or without pre-installed emitters.

  1. Layout of the main and branch line tubing: unroll the blue drip tubing with or without emitters. Use 1/2” blue stripe fittings to create 90-degree angles as necessary.
  2. Run 1/4” tubing branch lines to individual plants that require extra water or that are not reached by the 1/2” tubing. Simply punch a hole with blue stripe hole punch into the side of the 1/2” tubing, insert one end of a 1/4” barbed tee, elbow or coupling, then insert the other barbed end into a length of 1/4” tubing.
  3. Cut tubing to correct length: once you have connected the main line tubing to your water source you will be able to determine precisely what length of tubing you will need to supply your plants. Using a scissors or a blue stripe tubing cutter, make a square cut 12” beyond the desired length for later use with a 1/2” blue end clamp.
  4. Secure tubing: use toro blue stripe 1/2” tie down stakes to anchor tubing in the ground so that it stays securely in place. Tie down stakes are also available at Kooyman to secure 1/4” tubing.

Step 3: Distribution

The choice of emitters, foggers or stream jet spray heads you install, will depend upon your type of plants, their location and spacing.

  1. Placement of emitters: emitters should be placed over the plant’s root zone, halfway between the plant center and the outer edge of its canopy. Emitters may be inserted directly into 1/2” blue Stripe Tubing main lines, or at the end of 1/4” branch lines. For closely spaced bedding plants, tubing with pre-installed emitters is your best option.
  2. Install emitters: to install directly into 1/2” blue stripe tubing, punch a hole in the side wall of the tubing using the blue stripe hole punch, then simply insert the barbed end of an emitter or into the hole. If you make a mistake and punch a hole in the wrong spot, seal it using blue stripe drip hole plug. For 1/4” tubing, push the barbed end of an emitter into the open end of tubing, and place it next to an individual plant.
  3. Flush and close off end of line: when all emitters have been installed, turn on the water and flush out any dirt that may have gotten into the line during installation. At the ends of any open 1/2” tubing main line, install 1/2” blue stripe end clamps as shown. To close off 1/4” blue stripe tubing, you can simply install an emitter at the open end of the tubing line.