DIY Micro Irrigation

Project: Irrigating Courtyard Pots

Micro Irrigation systems are ideal for minimising water wastage and ensuring your plants are getting the exact amount of water they need.

Drip irrigation is simple and cost effective to install and guaranteed to save you plenty of time and energy hand watering your plants!

We set up our own automated drip irrigation system in no time by following the steps below. You can turn water on manually, or set it up with a Bluetooth® Tap Timer to create a self-watering system for your potted plants. We used the Holman BTX1 Smart Valve which allowed us to pre-program our ideal watering schedule using a smartphone.

Step 1

Count out the number of pots you’re needing to irrigate, noting how far apart they are. This will determine the number of drippers needed and the length 13mm Black Poly Irrigation Tube required for the project.

Step 2

Measure the length of 13mm Black Poly Irrigation Tube needed from your tap to the last pot. Be sure to include enough pipe to clear corners or steps in the area you’re irrigating. To get around any corners, simply cut the poly, and connect each side to a 13mm Barbed Elbow. To prevent future leaks or drips, connect 13mm Ratchet Clamps on either side of the elbow. These are used to attach micro fittings to the mainline poly pipe to prevent leakage.

Tip: Roll your 13mm Black Poly Irrigation Tube out in the sun and leave it to soften for 20-30 minutes. This makes it much easier to work with. If your poly runs through any garden beds, you can use Universal Hold Down Stakes to hold everything in place.

Step 3

Starting from the last pot, attach a 13mm End Plug onto the side of poly pipe furthest from the tap and secure it with a 13mm Ratchet Clamp.

Step 4

Neatly line the pipe behind the pots. Once hidden, measure the length of 4mm Irrigation Flex Tube required to take water from your mainline poly to each plant. To connect the drip lines, punch a hole in the mainline 13mm Black Poly Irrigation Tube (using the 5mm Poly Universal Hose Punch) where you want to add each dripper. Using 4mm Barb Joiners, attach the flex tube to the main line poly and your preferred dripper head.

Tip: Measure out some extra 4mm Irrigation Flex Tube so you’ve got enough to move around or change the pots in future.

Step 5

Connect your choice of K-Rain® Adjustable Trickler or PC Shrubbler Barbed Dripper. We used a combination of tricklers on spikes and dripping shrubblers. Centre the micro heads in each of your pots to one side of the plant or the base. Be careful not to damage any roots or seedlings when your pushing the irrigation spikes into the soil.

Step 6

Connect an Automatic Tap Timer to your garden tap. We used a BTX1 Smart Valve so we could pre-schedule everything from a smartphone. For more information about setting up your Bluetooth® Tap Timer click here.

Tip: Use a 2‑Way Brass Manifold to convert your garden tap into two independently operated outlets. This gives you a spare tap to use for manual hand watering or to hook up a separate irrigation system down the track.

Step 7

Connect your poly to the Bluetooth® Tap Timer (or straight onto your garden tap) using our Grip ‘n’ Lock™ Hose Connector; guaranteed no leaks or drips when connected to a hose or poly pipe!

Tip: We recommend attaching a 13mm Pressure Reducer to increase the efficiency of your drip system. As the name suggests, pressure reducers are designed to minimise water pressure before filtering it through the system.

Step 8

It’s time to test your system! Adjust your dripper heads to suit the needs of each plant and ensure everything is in working order. You can then set and forget about your new automated drip irrigation set up.

Comments (8)

    1. Hi Jamie, it should be ok to use as an air line. Please make sure the flex tube is cut straight with a sharp blade and the fittings are push in all the way. Thank you!

  1. Can I use barbed OR threaded sprays in 13mm poly pipe or is one better than the other? Also the same question in riser or flex tube.

    1. Hi Mike, we suggest you use a threaded riser and a threaded jet in your 13mm poly pipe. Alternatively you can use a barbed joiner with flextube and use a barbed spray on the flextube. So basically threaded on rigid tube and barbed on flextube.

    1. Hi Sin, there isn’t a lot of difference other than the spray pattern. The Vortex Spray Shrubbler is more of a fan spray and the Trickler is a finger spray. Thanks! Your Holman Team.

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Garden | Irrigation | Watering