Experiences in Drip Irrigation for Container Garden | Container gardening | Urban Gardening, Terrace gardening and Hydroponics

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Experiences in Drip Irrigation for Container Garden
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mgardener
Bangalore
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October 23, 2010 - 8:49 pm
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I have recently purchased Drip Irrigation equipment for my container garden. I want to automate it so that it can water the plants even when we are out of station for a few days. I would like to hear from you all, what are your experiences on deploying and using such a system. Is there anything I can learn from what you have found out?

Secondly, I haven't been very successful at finding a timer control for this. Does anyone know of any suppliers or dealers for such equipment in Bangalore?

Thanks for your replies in advance,

mgardenerSmile

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geekgardener
Bangalore, India
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October 24, 2010 - 11:25 am
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hi mgardener,

 

Welcome to this site. It will be nice if you could introduce yourself in the "New gardeners" section.

 

I have installed such a system and it has been working very well. If you have a  reservoir, you can use a submersible motor and use it to water the plants. You can also use Solenoid valve+timer setup to do this job.

 

/2010/04/18/growing-tomatoes-in-growbags-hydroponic-way/

Hope this helps.

 

geekgardener.

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mgardener
Bangalore
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October 25, 2010 - 8:07 pm
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Thanks a lot GG.

I liked the post on Hydroponics for Tomatoes. Looks like I will be able to get hold of the TM 619. As you rightly said there, I have been having tough time locating such a thing on the net or even when I visted SJP road recently. I am yet to explore that area in detail though as yet.

MG

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Urban Gardener
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October 26, 2010 - 3:20 am
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Hi MG,

Hope you have located the TM 619. I too had to struggle for it initially but got it for Rs. 650 (TM-619H - 4 pin) here in Delhi. Have implemented the same and is working out great. Want to integrate it with the mobile phone(to work on SMS or missed call) while I am away on vacations, let's see if I can find something ?

 

Do post your experience.

 

Happy Growing !

Urban Gardener (UG)

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mgardener
Bangalore
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October 26, 2010 - 8:35 pm
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Sure Urban Gardener,

I will post my experience. But I will be implementing my system only after Divali. So probably before Nov. End I won't have much update on that.

MG

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mgardener
Bangalore
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November 23, 2010 - 6:45 pm
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UG and GG,

Last week I visited KR Market area and got a Tullu Pump. I could not get the timer though as Om Electronics had run out of stock. Just waiting to see when I can pick that item.

In the mean time, I wanted some input from your experience.

With the pump, I have got an open lead wire of about 1.5 ft length. I will need to connect it to an extension wire with a plug. Now I am wondering how I should do it. I don't think it's a good idea to take the lead above the top of my tank as it's a tall barrel. As a result, the extension joint will be under water. I don't think that's good even if it's decently water proofed.

I am thinking to put a small hole near the bottom of the barrel to take the lead out and then join the extension out in the open air. Can MSeal seal this hole effectively to avoid water leaking out? Any other approach on this you can suggest?

MG

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mgardener
Bangalore
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January 18, 2011 - 8:24 pm
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Hi UG, GG, and in fact everyone interested in this topic,

I finally assembled my drip system for manual operation around mid Dec. 2010. I finally got a timer from the Mumbai's market as after many visits to Om Electronics they were still out of stock.

I got a TM619 H2 timer which quite simlpe to set up for connections. And after some initial hiccups, I realized that a reset of timer was necessary prior to programing a setting. After this reset and subsequent programing, my timer is now working beautifully and switching on/off automatically.

Thanks for every bit of help including all info you shared.

MG

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geekgardener
Bangalore, India
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January 19, 2011 - 4:04 pm
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Awesome! mgardener.

Thanks for keeping us updated. Would you mind sharing some pics so that in future if anyone is interested in setting up the same it would be helpful.

Congrats.
GG

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mgardener
Bangalore
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January 19, 2011 - 9:55 pm
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GG,

Sure, I will be happy to share the pics for those whom it will help. That's a great suggestion from your side.

MG

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jeev
Chennai
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July 4, 2011 - 11:03 am
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No reply to any query in any forum is sufficient enough unless its implemented and done and dusted 🙂 So here is my list:

1. Has any one implemented the drip irrigation system in Chennai?

2. If so, where can we get pipes, connectors, nozzles etc in the city? Any hardware shop can supply these?

3. Most important question: I read all the posts in this forum but its all based on a reservoir, and an immersible pump. Do we have a gravity based / mechanical timer based shut off/on of the pipe which always carries water from a raised reservoir? More importantly can we get this timer? I read solenoid/timer combo can be used. More details please.

 

I can afford an old 25 litre water can and keep it at a higher elevation. I need to get this system up before I leave to my hometown in 2 weeks time. Help!

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sri
bangalore
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July 4, 2011 - 5:42 pm
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Hi Jeev,

I am also looking for such a system.I have been browsing and trying to find an easy way for a gravity based system. But nothing seem to have worked. So I have got  a timer from SP road. Unfortunately, this is not at all working. The vendor says this doesnt have any warranty and wont be able to replace it. I  am looking for someone who can fix it for me...

My plan is to include a solenoid valve with timer and have this connected to the water tank output line. The solenoid I enquired was available for Rs400/-. Once I have all this, it will be easier to get this working.

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jeev
Chennai
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July 4, 2011 - 6:01 pm
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sri:

 

So what was the system that failed for you? Was it solenoid + timer? How much did that cost?

 

So you have not tried the 400 bucks solenoid? Does the 400 include the timer as well?

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camaroon123
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July 4, 2011 - 6:57 pm

Drip iririgation is a topic which is of great interest to me. My long term plan is to setup a terrace garden with a drip system fed by well water. I have not pursued the leads for this yet. I know that there are landscaping firms who can setup terrace garden.Any experiences?

 Any idea how much does it cost to setup a system for irrigating say about 1000sqft of terrace?. 

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mgardener
Bangalore
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July 4, 2011 - 7:54 pm
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Hi all of you interested in drip system.

My experience is thus. Since my pump is small one that can pump water to a height of 1.5m. Anything you raise by about 5 feet above floor should be able to drive your drip system. Just make sure the length of the pipe does not consume too much head else raise the height as required.

For equipment, look for any drip system provider and he should have every item you are looking for. It's easy to set up and costs very little. The landscape gardeners may do it for you but may be costly. I purchased whole of drip in about 400Rs. Higher cost was only for the timer and pump.

I have a TM619 timer as was used by GG and UG. It is working very fine. So Sri, I am not sure what you mean by failure? Is it not powering at all or not performing per your settings? What is the issue?

I have not tried a Solenoid yet but may do so in future. So any of you do it successfully, pl. share your story.

MG

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sri
bangalore
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July 5, 2011 - 7:48 pm
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Hi

I just found that the timer is working. It was a problem with a wrong connection :).  Now I can experiment it with solenoid valve.

Will post you guys once done.

 

Sri.

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camaroon123
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July 24, 2011 - 1:53 pm
Hello All,
I have seriously started looking at putting up containers in my terrace in Chennai. I called up a person here who does this drip irrigation as per Justdial. He sent a representative who after looking at the terrace told me that water proofing is needed and rejected my proposal to have a gravity based drip system saying it will not work. He also suggested to have shade put up in the setup of greenhouse. Finally this firm indicated a quote of around 80KSurprisedYellCryConfusedLaugh(mix of emotions here)  I figured this scale of work does not fit into his business..
Terrace gardeners, I need your inpus here
1. During rains there is ample water flowing through the roof. Why is there a need for waterproofing just because plants need to be grown?
I thought of having a large plastic underneath the containers to prevent seepage. Is this sufficient?
2. Does a gravity based drip system really work?. I already have a pump which can push water from well to overhead tank about 10 foot high. If I keep container there to supply drip system, will it work?. 
Can some please some idea of the costs involved here,
  2.a Gravity based system,
    1. Dedicated container for storing water - around Rs800
    2. Pressure regulator & filter - ?
    3. 2 x Drip main lines - assuming 100 feet - ?
    4. Drip sub lines or feeder lines  - assuming 2 x 20 pots - 60 feet - ?
    5. Pot emitters - 20 nos - ?
    6. T joints ..etc - ?
    7. Large containers - 20
    8. In case of automation - Solenoid valve - Rs 600, TM619 timer - around Rs600
    9. Any other stuff?
  2.b Pump system
    1. Submersible pump - around 600 as per GG's post
    2. Pressure regulator & filter - ?
    3. 2 x Drip main lines - assuming 100 feet - ?
    4. Drip sub lines or feeder lines  - assuming 2 x 20 pots - 60 feet - ?
    5. T joints ..etc - ?
    6. Large containers - 20
    7. In case of automation TM619 timer - around Rs600
    8. Dedicated container for storing water - around Rs800
    9. Any other stuff?
3. Any comments on 50% shade net and its cost?. In chennai terraces I feel this is absolutely required. The plants will certainly die in heat without proper irrigaton systems.
I want to get a baseline cost before I get my foot into this.
Finally the million dollar question, where do I get these components for retail sale in Chennai?. I searched for drip irrigation 
in Justdial and got my hands burnt. I figure the timers and pumps will be available in Ritchie street, but what about the agriculture stuff? I enquired some hardware stores and they do not have them.
I looked at DIY drip irrigation kits available in US websites for around 20$ and around 60$ with timer and all. In 20north this cost around 4-5K including duty and shipping. This will be the height of desperationWink
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Srikanth
Serilingampally, Hyderabad
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July 24, 2011 - 9:54 pm
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Hi Camaroon,

 

I cannot answer your million dollar question but you can probably check with places where you can buy vegetable seeds and fertilizers. They should know where you can get the drip irrigation stuff.

 

Here are the rough prices in Hyderabad (shouldn't be much different in Chennai).

12mm Drip line (Netafim or Jain) - Rs 6 to 8 / meter. It is sold only in bundles (generally in 100 , 300 and 500 m). You can get local varieties around the same price in smaller quantities.

Micro tubes - Around 2 Rs/meter.

Drip Emitters - (Netafim and Jain) Rs. 300 / 100 pcs

T-Joints/Elbows/End Taps - Rs 100 to 200 / 100 pcs

 

Check if 12 mm main line is good enough for you or if you need 16 mm. I am not sure if the water head is sufficient for your purpose but submersible pumps do not cost much anyway.

 

Remember to buy a poker and a cigarette lighter. Yes, cigarette lighter! It is mighty useful for softening the drip pipe to insert the T-Joints and elbows. I do not use a filter as these pipes and Emitters are dirt cheap (especially when you have a stock of 500 m).

 

There is a wonderful post by GG which details all the stuff that you might need for a Drip system.

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Thanks,

Srikanth

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camaroon123
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July 25, 2011 - 10:08 pm

Thanks Srikanth. I have a few newbie questions. Hope I am not hijacking this thread.

1. How is the drip manline and microtube different than normal garden hose that we get?. It is more suitable for making holes and connecting the two?

2. Do you feed your drip using submersible pump?. Any idea what should be the minmum pressure for it to work?. Does the motor need to be on for the drip to work?

3. Do drip emitters really help?. I see in GG's post that a normal open microtube without any emitter is used. 

 

I am sure I can find people who can sell these things, but I want to do my homework before I get it. 

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Srikanth
Serilingampally, Hyderabad
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July 26, 2011 - 9:00 am
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1. Yes. The drip mainline and microtube are made sort of for each other. Please read the post by GG on drip setup. I cannot reemphasise it more. There are many valuable tips in it and also the other parts and their names. If you have not read that post then you better read it now! The cost per meter of drip is much cheaper than the normal garden hose. Another major point to note is that the garden hose tend to grow algae over a period of time due to exposure to sun. Drip pipes being black in color do not let the light passthrough.

2. Yes I feed my drip using submersible pump. Minimum pressure -> read GG's post but basically depens on how far and how many outlets and twists and turns (elbows) you are using in the drip setup. As a thumbrule for every elbow attached you lose about 1 ft in height. I would anyway suggest a pressure pump in using emitters around 900 l/h. The price difference isn't much.

3. Depends. If you have a week pump and you use no emitters then only the first few outlets will get the water. Emitters help ensure that accurate quantity of water (4 L/min, 8L/min etc) is discharged at every outlet provided the pressure is sufficient. If you not use an emitter then you will be forced to use a high pressure pump for the water to reach the end of the main line but in the process the first few outlets will get way too much water compared to the last few.

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Thanks,

Srikanth

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ramna
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August 2, 2011 - 8:34 pm
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camaroon123 said:

Finally the million dollar question, where do I get these components for retail sale in Chennai?.
Hi camaroon123, drip irrigation systems are advertised in a magazine called "Pasumai Vikatan", you can get a copy. Actually some of the articles are quite good in that.
Or, I can find back the contact details and post....in some days.Embarassed
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