Watering is one of the most, if not the most, important chores in the garden. You likely do it every day, so why not spend some time and a little money to get the best watering system for plants in your garden?
Why Use Garden Watering Systems
Of course, you can always simply use the hose and a watering can to take care of your garden, but unless you have just a small balcony container garden, this labor-intensive method gets old fast. Choosing a better watering system is important for several reasons:
- It will save you time on this daily or near daily chore.
- The right system may save you money too, by watering more efficiently.
- You can stop breaking your back moving a hose around the garden.
- An irrigation system can be customized to match your garden’s exact water needs.
How to Choose an Irrigation System
The best watering method for your garden is one that balances cost, efficiency, and effectiveness. It needs to water your plants without wasting water and without costing more than you can afford. Here are some options:
Sprinklers. For the low-budget garden, a sprinkler is a cheap and easy solution. You’ll still need to lug it around the yard, but it’s still easier and faster than spending time standing with a hose.
In-ground sprinklers. If you have the budget for it, in-ground sprinklers make watering easy. Turn the system on and off when you want or put it on a timer. A downside to this option is that it doesn’t allow much flexibility in making landscaping changes without an expensive rearrangement of the system.
Soaker hoses. This is another lower-budget option. A soaker hose has little holes in it. You lay the hose strategically in beds and the water drips out and soaks the soil. This is a good choice if you are interested in saving water. You won’t lose a lot to evaporation.
Drip irrigation. A drip irrigation system is similar to soaker hoses but is a more permanent installation. It costs more than soaker hoses but less than an in-ground sprinkler system.
Rain barrels. For the most eco-friendly watering, try a rain barrel. It allows you to collect and use rainwater, saving on city or well water. You will still need a method for using that water to irrigate your garden, though.
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Mary Ellen Ellis has been gardening for over 20 years. With degrees in Chemistry and Biology, Mary Ellen's specialties are flowers, native plants, and herbs.