Hydroponics & GardeningUncategorized

Building Self Watering Irrigation for your Backyard (for around 125 dollars)


I thought this might be a fun one to share. This requires no programming, and no fancy hardware. Just a little bit of elbow grease.

When I first moved into my new home with my significant other, I fell in love with the backyard. I built my own little greenhouse and quickly expanded it to a mini garden with some stand up pots. And now the veggies I grow last us year round. One of my challenges I quickly encountered: I work many contracts and have many hobbies. Being home at off hours, how can I easily make sure my plants stay watered?

The easy way was to build a very simple irrigation system.

Automatic daily water timer (40 dollars)
Facet Connector (15 dollars)
Patio Kit (43 dollars) — for 21 potted plants in greenhouse
3x Sprinklers (4 dollars) — for 3 garden sprayers
1/2 inch tubing, 100ft (13 dollars) — from facet connector to backyard
1x 1/2 inch tube stop, 10x goof plugs, 20x stakes (6 dollars)

Time to Install:

bout 3 hours.

I apologize in advance for the messy greenhouse photos. I haven’t finished cleaning it up for the summer


  • Connect your timer to your facet.
  • Connect your timer to your regulator – this includes a spot on the bottom for your house and a side port to run 1/2 inch tubing
  • Run the 1/2 tubing under your yard to the backyard, make sure it passes your pots. Your greenhouse. And your garden. You may need a T connector and additional tube-ends. This is your master hose you will tap into.


  • Stick a drip valve into the master 1/2 tube at every pot. Some may require more than one. Run a 1/4 tube into the pot into a plastic stake. Make sure it is at a downward angle to drip.
  • Some drip connectors are much better than others. I find the rounded ones lose their connection frequently.
  • There is a 2 dollar punch tool that makes it much easier to poke the right hole in the 1/2 tubing for the 1/4 inch connector.


  • At the garden, run 1/4 tubes to the small sprinker heads. You may want to turn their valves low until later on to assess the pressure.
  • While configuring the sprinkler heads, I like to use a wood stake. It stops the sprinkler head from spraying you.



  • In the greenhouse, tab into the main line. Run 1/4 tubes to your green house pots using drippers. Alternatively you can punch small holes in a run of 1/4 tubing (I do) with a valve on the end. This lets you run it for a length a little easier using a homemade drip line.

Once complete, test the water pressure and get ready to be a little wet adjusting your pressure and valves. Watch the time to determine how much water your plants will really need. Program the timer using the timing above. And you’ve completed a self watering, simple irrigation system for your home! Later on you can add a collector for rainwater and it is very inexpensive to repair or expand as needed


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