by Stuart Spaulding,
CLIA Certified Landscape Irrigation Auditor Training & Communications Manager at DIG Corp.


This is a suggestion for using a drip system in a garden or for a long line along a fence with flowers, shrubs, groundcover and trees. This recommendation can be used on medium-to-heavy soil.

Suggestion for home garden:
With this suggestion we recommend using 1/2″ drip tubing as the main line. The 1/2″ drip tubing can deliver the water in a curving or long path to the flowers, shrubs, groundcover and trees. Use the drip emitters for individual plants, or plants that are spaced close together in a row by inserting the drippers directly into the 1/2″ drip tubing. For individual plants that are far-off from the path of the 1/2″ drip tubing, use 1/4″ micro tubing as the feeder line and insert the drippers at the end of the micro tubing near the plant, then secure the dripper with a stake.

With these suggestions you can water a diversity of plants on the same zones or faucet.

To resolve the issue of various plants sizes such as trees, shrubs, roses, and vegetables, see our suggestion for the number of drippers recommended per plant.

For a garden area with a diversity of plants and spacing between the plants, our recommendation is to use one type of dripper (ex. a 1-GPH dripper) or dripline with 12 to 18 inch spacing. The main feature of this option is to allow the user to know the total flow rate of the system.

  • For plants closely spaced together, use a 1-GPH (4 liters) dripper every 10 to 12 inches (20-30 cm) apart or dripline with 12 to 18 inch spacing.
  • For small plants up to two feet high and spaced a few feet apart, use a 1-GPH dripper per plant or dripline with 18 inches of spacing.
  • For plants 2′ to 3′ high (50-75 cm), use 2, 1-GPH (4 liters) drippers per plant spaced 12 inches apart or dripline with 12 inch spacing.
  • For plants 3′ to 5′ high (75-100 cm) use 3-4, 1-GPH (4 liters) drippers per plant spaced 12 inches (25 cm) apart or loop the dripline around the plant.
  • For plants 5′ to 7′ (100-150 cm) high, use 4-6, 1-GPH (4 liters) drippers per plant, spaced 12 inches apart or loop the dripline around the plant with the drippers.

Parts needed to start a system from a faucet: To automate the system, our suggestion is to use a battery operated controller or hose end timer (optional). From there, attach a backflow device, as well as a filter to protect the drip and micro sprinklers from plugging. In addition, be sure to add a 25-PSI pressure regulator after the filter. For a long run of 1/2 inch” drip tubing (400′-500′ long), use the adjustable pressure regulator.

All of our dripline and fittings are UV resistant, and are good for above-ground installation

Parts suggestion:

  • Optional battery operated controller, model BO9D
  • 3/4″ FHT back flow device, model D45 (#10). Connect it to the controller, or if a controller is not used, connect directly to the faucet.
  • 3/4″” FHT screen filter with a 155 mesh, model D57A (# 13). Connect it to the backflow device.
  • 3/4″ FHT 25-PSI pressure regulator, model D46 (#4). Connect it to the filter.
  • 3/4″ FHT swivel adaptor, model C34 (# 18). If you need to split the line into two sections at the faucet, use a tee, model C38 (#22). Connect it to the pressure regulator.
  • 100′ roll of 1/2″ drip tubing, model B36. Connect to the swivel adaptor and run drip tubing between or near the plants. If more than 100′ is needed, use a 500′ roll, model B37.
  • 100′ roll of 1/4″ micro tubing, model B38100. You can use the 1/4″ micro tubing to extend to plants that are far-off from the 1/2″ drip tubing. If all the plants are next to the path of the 1/2″ drip tubing, then the 1/4″ micro tubing is not needed.
  • 1/4″ barb, model H80A or H80B (#25). Connect the 1/4″ micro tubing by punching hole in the 1/2″ drip tubing, inserting the 1/4″  barb, and pushing the 1/4″ micro tubing onto the barb.
  • 1/2″ coupling (if needed), model C33 (#17). For connecting two pieces of 1/2″ drip tubing.
  • 1/2″ hose ends model F68B(#55). After you install the 1/2″ drip tubing and before you install the drippers, be sure to flush the line, and close the end of the 1/2″ drip tubing. Next, pressurize the system again, and make sure there are no leaks.
  • 1-GPH PC dripper, model B221B (#30). Attach the dripper directly to the 1/2″ drip tubing or to the end of the 1/4″ micro tubing.
  • Punch, model D44 (#52). Punch holes in the 1/2″ drip tubing for insertion of drippers.
  • Goof Plugs (if needed), model G79B (#56). If you have a hole in the 1/2″ drip tubing, you can use these plugs to close the hole.

Program a controller to run approximately 45 min. to 1 hour every two days, depending on your location and soil type. After a week, check the soil moisture and health of the plants and adjust the watering time if necessary.