One of the best investments a gardener can make is to purchase a drip irrigation system. These systems use much less water than a traditional sprinkler system. Your garden will thrive yet consume 30% – 50% less water. When you use a drip system in your organic garden there isn’t any chance for water to evaporate or run off because it’s completely absorbed by the soil. Also, the water doesn’t touch the plant’s leaves which mean there is less chance of spreading disease via water.
A drip irrigation system provides a steady supply of water to your garden. You can literally water your entire garden in seconds – basically the time it takes you to turn then water on, think for a few seconds on your next chore and then turn off the water. You may also hear drip irrigation referred to as trickle irrigation.
When you use a drip irrigation system in conjunction with mulch your plants blossom earlier and give higher yields. Studies proved that several types of vegetables including peppers, melons, okra, squash, tomatoes and eggplant produce more than twice the crop grown in gardens that didn’t use drip irrigation and mulching.
Your plants aren’t subjected to moisture related diseases like rust, mildew and blossom damage. The reason for this is because the water never touches the plant leaves. The water is dripped into the soil where the plant roots absorb the moisture.
A drip irrigation system also reduces soil compaction. When soil is saturated with a lot of water compaction occurs. Drip irrigation reduces or eliminates this problem because the water is applied slowly, via a drip spout, and the soil structure remains loose. The most common types of drip irrigation systems are the drip soaker; the porous drip soaker; and the emitter drip system.
These systems are pretty forgiving to install. They are very affordable especially when compared to the cost of your time (or your hired helps’ time) spent moving a hose and sprinkler or other irrigation system. Typically you can purchase a drip irrigation system to water a 200 square foot garden for .50 – 1.00 a square foot.