With hot weather on the horizon, we’ve been thinking a lot about our gardens and lawns. Although we do live in a place that still gets enough rain in the summer to sustain lovely flowers and lush grass, it’s also a place that’s often hot enough to require a little extra watering in the highest points of summer. If a drought happens upon our yard, which has been known to occur at least once most years, we’d hate to see our hard work begin to dry out and wilt. That’s why we’ve been doing all kinds of research about sprinkler and irrigation systems. You see, even if you buy an irrigation system in stores, there’s still a level of DIY that goes into the process of installing it. We’ve been balancing that reality with the idea of making one ourselves, and we’ve also been looking for automatic watering alternatives for the smaller and potted parts of our yard that a wider system wouldn’t account for.
All in all, we’re actually pretty pleased with the number of crafty options we discovered! Just in case you’re interested in learning how to make your own irrigation system as well, check out the 15 best ideas, designs, and tutorials that we came across in our search.
1. Quick-snap, above ground DIY sprinkler system
Are you actually totally into the idea of building an irrigation system of your own rather than simply buying a pre-packaged one that you can put together? Then you might find this guide from DIY Reid very helpful. Besides showing you the best spots in a garden to place irrigation heads, they also advise you on what kinds of pieces and materials to get to make an easy “quick-snap” design, as well as how to put the whole thing together properly.
2. DIY self-watering system for potted plants and trees
In addition to your lawn and planted gardens, do you also have several potted plants that could used some extra automatic watering for the days when you don’t get to them quickly enough in the heat? Then perhaps you’d also do well to make yourself this simple DIY self-watering system that’s outlined step by simple step on Johnnie Walker!
3. DIY above-ground irrigation systems for landscaping
Is your garden the kind that actually requires quite a lot of water and regularly, all across the lawn, but you’re fairly intent on not digging into the ground like a buried sprinkler system would require? Then you’re definitely going to get along a lot better with something like this DIY above-ground irrigation system featured in detail on Gardeners. They also give you tips specific to covering large areas of landscaping rather than just small garden patches.
4. DIY inexpensive garden irrigation system
If you’re going to put all that work into making your own garden irrigation system, would you actually rather create an underground design, so long as its effective, subtle, and not very invasive on your greenery? Then we think you’ll really appreciate this tutorial and full materials guide from Man Made, which is also wonderfully inexpensive to do compared to other underground systems.
5. DIY bottle lawn sprinkler
Whether you’re in the market for the most affordable sprinkler system you can make or simply looking to replace a broken head on your already installed system, here’s a really easy solution that only really requires a water bottle! Take a better look at the tutorial and full guide featured on Farming Cosmos to learn more about how this piece can be made, set up, and most effectively placed and used.
6. Irrigating herb gardens in 2L bottles
Perhaps you’re very interested indeed in doing a little bit of gardening this summer but you actually live in an apartment and you’re pretty much limited to small herb gardens right now? Well, believe it or not, irrigation is still something you might consider paying attention to even in your little herb patches! Check out how Parents.com made these simple but super effective irrigating herb gardens using 2L pop bottles.
7. DIY drip irrigation system
Did we really catch your attention when we started talking about above ground irrigation systems that would help you cover a lot of ground with your watering, but some parts of your garden actually don’t require quite as much water as others? Then you might benefit from something like this homemade drip irrigation system from Two Feet First that’s able to provide a slower, smaller flow of moisture to the parts of your yard that only feature hose length and not sprinkler heads.
8. How to install any sprinkler system
Whether you’re planning on making your own sprinkler system or buying one and installing it, doing so correctly can be a small challenge, especially if it’s the kind that gets buried in the ground. This awesome and very accessible tutorial from MrFixIt DIY, however, is outlined specifically to be as universal as possible, walking you step by step through the process of installing essentially any standard sprinkler system in an average yard, even with unique layout.
9. Adjustable DIY drip watering system
Did we catch your attention quite well with the concept of using a bottle to make a drip irrigation for potted plants, but you’ve got a few that need more watering sometimes than others, or that grow rapidly and need something easily customizable? Then we’re pretty sure Instructables has the perfect simple design for you! This adjustable drip irrigation watering system is much like the previous bottle based design, but quicker to refill and simpler to set up, take down, and change to account for your plant’s needs.
10. The ultimate DIY irrigation system for lawn experts
If you’re the kind of person who has actually installed sprinkler and irrigation systems before and is simply looking to upgrade or customize a new house, then you might just be the perfect person to give this more advanced system a try! These plants from DIY Lawn Expert show you how to install DIY irrigation solutions in your full property, including in uniquely laid out or high maintenance yards. They even show you how to account for your back, front, and side yards in the system’s impactful reach.
11. How to set up an inexpensive irrigation system for small gardens
If you’re working with a much smaller space than a lot of those that you’ve seen so far, then you might need to approach things slightly differently than someone with a sprawling yard and lots of ground to cover. We’d suggest checking out something like this specially designed small garden irrigation system outlined on Man Made! They show you how to do it with thinner, malleable piping rather than materials like the thicker PVC pipes you might have seen in some of the projects above.
12. Above-ground PVC pipe irrigation system
Did your attention actually perk up just now when we mentioned PVC pipes because you’ve made plenty of things with them and find them easy to work with? Well, if you’re also looking for a somewhat temporary and very simple above ground sprinkler system, then we’re pretty sure this tutorial from The Crafty Blog Stalker is the perfect option for you. Their instructions are simple and accompanied by photos that are very helpful indeed.
13. DIY vertical garden with drip watering system
Are you still thinking about the idea of planting an herb garden with some kind of smart watering system of its own, but you can’t help wanting a different presentation than the 2L pop bottle design we showed you above? Well, if you’ve got a little more space to work with and at least a basic knowledge of woodworking projects, then you might get along a lot better with this lovely shelf style herb garden from Houseful of Handmade! They show you how to construct and plant it so that it bears a drip watering system, letting you arrange your plants vertically according to where in the system they need to sit to take advantage of how the water will drain vertically.
14. DIY soaker hose watering system
Just in case you’re still looking for a gentler, more passive watering system that won’t contribute to too much soil or nutrient runoff, here’s another alternative above ground sprinkler system outlined step by step on Gardenfork. They each you how to make a drip hose sprinkler setup like you saw before, but this time also how to cover the punctured hose lengths with foam that will absorb the water and more slowly soak it into the dirk, distributing it more evenly than direct holes.
15. How to install an above-ground drop irrigation system
If you’re feeling quite confident but you’re not sure you’d call yourself “expert”, like the widest spread tutorial we showed you above was intended for, then maybe you’ll find this project from DIY Network to be an effective middle ground! Their guide walks you carefully through the process of installing a full and slightly adjustable above ground irrigation system, but this time using slightly more heavy duty materials to make it long lasting and ensure it stands up to inclement weather.
Do you have a crafty friend who has long been considering purchasing an irrigation or sprinkler system but who you think would really rather make it, so long as they had some help? Share this post with them so they have all kinds of guidance to follow!