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Drip Irrigation It’s Just Crazy to Container Garden Without It (Part One – The Timer)

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I have been very surprised over the last few years to find that the majority of experienced urban gardeners have little knowledge or interest in drip irrigation. I have several close friends who are passionate gardeners of flowers and vegetables. They too are in that majority. Whenever possible, I ask them why they don’t utilize a drip system to irrigate their decorative planters, containers of flowers and vegetables, window boxes and more. Many offer the simple explanation that they like to water their plants. Most gardeners I talk to have never seen a drip irrigation system operation. This post is to convince you that you need a drip irrigation system and that the minimal cost and time to set it up is easily justified.

I can offer you one of my experiences that best exemplifies the need to water a container grown plant when it is necessary not when it is convenient. It has happened to all of us at least once. Several years ago, like millions of Americans, I purchased a hanging flowering basket one Sunday in late May. I looked at 100s to find the best plant with lush full foliage and the most blooms. At home I found the perfect location for it that offered full sun from late morning to late afternoon.

The following morning I watered my beautiful flowering basket and left for work. I returned home 10 hours later to find my $39.00 flowering basket severely wilted. I was able to save the plant by drenching the pot in the kitchen sink, but most of the blossoms were lost. It took three weeks to nurse my plant back to good health, but it never regained the vigor and beauty that attracted me to it. I suspect most readers can relate to my experience.

You should never have to choose between going to the beach, to work or lunch and watering your container plants. A fully automated drip irrigation system provides complete freedom to best enjoy your day and come home to beautiful, healthy and productive plants. The operative words in the preceding sentence are “fully automated”.

The My Garden Post drip irrigation system includes the easiest to program and most dependable timer I have found in my gardening career. If you have ever been frustrated by complicated operating instructions, you’ll thank me for this introduction.

To set up a fully automated drip irrigation system, you must have a battery powered (2 AA) timer that allows you to program the frequency or think of it as how often you want to water your containers and the duration. The duration is simply how long the water will drip when the system is programmed to turn on.

Programming the MGP “Rain Star” timer couldn’t be easier. See the photo above,

  • Frequency Options – It should be obvious, the timer can be used to irrigate everything from seedlings to trees
  • Settings range from once an hour to once a week
  • Duration Options – Settings range from one minute to two hours
  • Settings in Photo –
  • I have set the featured timer to turn on once every 24 hours and run for 30 minutes. This is more than adequate for most container plants.
  • Important Note When Programming Your Settings –
  • Program the settings at the time of day when you want the system to turn on the following day and every day thereafter.

Keep an eye out for “part two”. In a week or so, I will give you a detailed explanation of the ease and minimal expense to assemble the tubing, drippers and fittings to your My Garden Post “Rain Star” timer. With that, you will have a fully automated drip irrigation system that remembers to water so you don’t have to.

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