Just to reiterate, you now have a 8'-10' length of 1/2" soaker hose attached to your garden hose. You arrange that soaker hose in your beds and around bushes and trees. You then turn on your spigot at a low pressure, set a timer to sound an alarm in one hour and you attend to other chores until the alarm sounds. At that time you move the soaker hose to a different bed, bush or tree and repeat until all of your plants are watered sufficiently.
Here are some other attachments you may add to your system to make your work even easier (you know the adage, "Work smarter, not harder").
First off there are longer lengths of soaker hose that you can cut into custom lengths that will fit your beds or around your bushes and trees. These lengths of soaker hose can be attached either using male and female hose ends or by hose repair couplings. You may also need some lengths of regular 1/2" garden hose. If you will be using the longer lengths of soaker hose, adding valves is a good idea.
Start by purchasing a gang valve with four outlets. Each outlet will have a dedicated valve. You can now have four discrete watering systems. I suggest one be dedicated to your garden hose which you will use for washing the patio, filling your bird baths, watering hanging pots and other purposes. The next valve will go to one bed or the first plant in a longer line of plants. The third and fourth will follow, likewise.
You may also want to add valves along a long run to turn off a bed that has plantings that may not need as much water as those in the beginning of the run. My vegetable square foot garden tends to get excessively wet, because of the way I built the bed. So, I have a valve to turn off or restrict the water going to my square foot garden.
Then there is the addition of a timer. Timers are available as either wind-up mechanical or battery operated digital. The mechanical is less costly. I had a mechanical timer and I liked using it but it broke a few years ago and I haven't replaced it. I guess I really don't need it. The timer and alarm works better for me. If the water timer goes off and I don't realize it, I may not get back outside to turn it on for another leg of my system.
I may have gotten too involved with this whole soaker hose system, but I like it. I will add in some photos and captions below to try and illustrate.
In my next post I will describe another system without using the gang valve which uses more labor but, it may be the system for your needs.
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