The poly tubing goes from the rainbarrel (instructions in link at the right) :

The tubing from the rainbarrel (blue) connects to the battery-operated hose timer.  The timer gives water to the green poly tubing that goes to the garden (the red shows regular drip-line which didn't work - I'm going to replace it with poly tubing) :

Next, I used 1/2" Barbed Tee connectors to space the tubing evenly throughout my garden. They are cheaper online but you can get them where the tubing is sold :
The green Dot is next to a barbed Tee.

I folded the ends of the tubing with thick wire and turned on the water:

(You could use an end-cap connector for this.)

Next, I started at the end of the supply line (so the air leaves the entire line first) and punched holes where the plants were.
How did I punch the VERY small holes?!! I heated a thin stick pin over a candle and pushed it easily though the pipe. I was very careful to make sure not to catch anything on fire, watching out for wind and leaves etc. I used pliers to hold the pin:

I put the holes on the bottom of the pipe! If you don't do this, the water will squirt very far away 
when the rain barrel is full (so far that the plant will not get soaked) :

Each time you melt a hole, the pin will need reheating.
I started by putting about 3 holes per plant/area. If a hole clogs, then the plant will still get watered. But too many holes will reduce the pressure so that the holes at the end of the line will not give out any water. This is why I started with 3 holes per plant. I added more when the barrel was almost empty. When it is almost empty, you can judge if the holes are still distributing the water evenly. If they still do, put a few more holes to allow for more-even watering. Picture of a little stream of water:
If the hole were pointing upwards, the water would not squirt on the plant.


  1. This looks ingenious! I'm looking to put in barrels to water my garden spots, and have buried ollas (2 clay pots glued on top of each other) near key plants. A T connector will be used to go down into each olla, timed to water automatically after testing to see when the ollas go dry. When it rains, the ollas fill up by absorbing the surrounding wet soil. Being in Austin, want to use all the rain water I can get. Do you do consulting work?

  2. I certainly do. Kindly, email your phone number and a convienient time to call you to

  3. i am interested in the make and model of your timer as most companies i have contacted say i need more pressure to activate the timer than you seem to have ..but you seem to have it working and your barrel is not even raised ..any help would be appreciated