DIY an irrigation system for your garden

At long last something to write about, I can finally start installing my irrigation system because the soil at 3623 has been sorted out one time.  About a year ago I received Jane’s Delicious Garden as a gift and it is truly one of those gifts that keep on giving.  First thing that I realised after reading just a few pages is that the soil in my garden was desperately in need of nourishment.  Due to the fast water runoff during the rainy season the soil was stripped of all nutrients.  So in went the french drain and I can proudly say that it has been a tremendous success.  Even the massive amounts of rain in 2014 could not overwhelm it, \0/!  

Once the water runoff was managed it was time to start feeding the soil.  So all the lawn cuttings and leaves went on top of the ground for the past year.  Granted, it is not a great look for your garden but it is free and it works like a charm!  Look at these critters that are now residing in the soil at 3623.  Woot woot!

After a year of patiently waiting I can finally start planting in the garden without having the plants die within a couple of weeks.  First order of business was to get the vegetable patch up and running again.  It turns out I was not really winning at composting, so the old compost box was dismantled and re-purposed as raised vegetable beds.

My first planting did not go so great, only the cocktail tomatoes made it past infancy.  This was absolutely my own fault for not keeping the soil moist during the germination and seedling stages.  So I decided to build my own irrigation system for the veggie boxes.  No more maneuvering the sprinkler just so, just turn-on-the-tap convenience from now on.

What you will need:

  • Irrigation piping, I went with 12mm diameter
  • Sprinklers, have a look at Chamberlain, I found their sprinklers are on average half the price of those at Builder’s Warehouse.
  • Pipe clamps and connectors if needed
  • End cap
  • Sprinkler tubing if you think the default tubing will be too short
Irrigation pipes, thin ones and a thick one, sprinklers, pipe clamps and a terminator.

Irrigation pipes, thin ones and a thick one, sprinklers, pipe clamps and a terminator.



Assembling your irrigation system is super easy and we finished the whole project in less than 20 minutes.  I needed to replace the default tubing that comes with each sprinkler because I needed it to be longer.  DO NOT try to pull off the tubing, it is nigh impossible.  Use a knife to make small incisions to remove the tubing.  Strangely enough pushing new tubing onto the sprinklers is easy as pie, but gosh once it is on, it is ON.  The other ‘hard’ bit was pushing the sprinkler endpoints into the irrigation pipe.  We found that using pliers works best, fingers are too fat and unwieldy.

Completed irrigation system

Turn on your tap, sit back and relax.

Now that my irrigation issues have been sorted out I have planted my autumn crops.  Trying out carrots, beetroot and spinach this season.  Fingers crossed that we’ll be eating from our own garden soon!