Water, Water, Everywhere…

Hello again! I’m back again today to tell you all about how I installed a water tap in my greenhouse.

In our last home, I used a hozelock tap connector to connect a hosepipe to the bathroom sink tap and fed a hosepipe through the bathroom window to water the garden. It was as makeshift and odd as it sounds. The connector would sometimes fly off the tap and water would be flooded everywhere in the bathroom… not ideal! As for jobs needing the watering can, I had to make numerous arduous trips to and from the kitchen tap. This was not only laborious, but also messy as it constantly brought muddy wellies into the kitchen and water drips/splashes on the floor, which soon turned into a muddy mess… again, not ideal! So I am really spoilt in our new home now because I had an outside tap put in last month which has made watering so efficient (oh modern miracles). I also recently treated myself to a new kink free hosepipe which has totally been money well spent as far as I am concerned! My old cheapy traditional hose pipe on a reel did the job but was so heavy and cumbersome. The old holder was practically falling apart too. I chose to opt for this hose rather than the similar X-hose because it was £29.99 for 100ft for the one I bought, whilst the 100ft X-hose is currently £40.00 (usually £49.99) from The Range. (You may be able to buy one cheaper online however). Either way, the one I bought was cheaper and it has been so useful! I have not used it much yet because I haven’t needed to: I only water once a week very thoroughly and only in very dry periods. But the handful of times I’ve needed to use it, it has been incredibly easy compared to the old days!

When I was buying my new kink free hosepipe, I decided to buy some new hosepipe attachments as my old ones has begun to leak. It was then that I came across this double tap connector and it sparked an idea that I had for supplying water to my greenhouse to make watering all my plants in there so much easier and efficient. Even with my new outside tap, I was still traipsing backwards and forwards with a watering can to get all the plants and pots watered in the greenhouse, which I was finding annoying and stressful, as I am often short on time throughout the week due to work commitments!

I knew I would have a way of discretely hiding the old hose pipe that I would use to run a water supply to the greenhouse, since we have a long term plan to build a deck right outside the backdoor and around this area:

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Some of you may recognise this area as our planned Woodland Garden… well yes, it’s taken a messy turn whilst Mr. Meadow has been laying out the brick pathways in the garden. That huge pile of sod is from removing the old grass pathways. You’ll have to use your imagination for now because the hose pipe will eventually be concealed once we begin working on this area! To be honest, at this point in time, it is useful for us to have somewhere to do this building work type stuff though as it should only need to be done once.

Anyway, the hose pipe was still in good working order, so it would have been a shame to not re-use it. I simply attached the double tap to the outside tap and ran the old hose pipe along the floor and then under the deck near the greenhouse:

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This area is also going to be decked too so the pipe will be hidden.

Then it simply runs along the floor down the side of the greenhouse and behind the compost bin:

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Before Winter arrives, I think I will need to insulate the pipe to help prevent freezing. If any of you could offer me some advice on this, that would be much appreciated! I purchased a tap cover which I will put over the main outside tap to also help prevent freezing. However, I think it would be nice to build a nice wooden tap cover to hide and to store the expanding hose pipe from the elements.

Then I just drilled a hole into my greenhouse and threaded the hose pipe through! Simple! Okay, so now I had water, but with me being fussy, I wanted a proper outside tap to be able to control the water flow. The intention here is not to leave the water flowing to this tap or to use it for on-demand water supply as I would be worried about the connectors failing and then the garden would be flooded and we would waste so much water. I am happy to turn the main outside tap on which is right outside the backdoor before I reach the new greenhouse tap, so it works well 🙂 I tend to keep the water supply nozzle for the expanding kink free hose turned to the off position to prevent me accidently inflating it when I don’t need to use it.

So anyway, back to the tap… I found an outside tap in my trusty Wilkos store, but could not find the elbow joint piece to allow me to fix it to the wall of the greenhouse. So I ended up going to our local hardware/DIY store B&Q where I found exactly what I needed: the outside tap and the wall plate elbow. Together, both of these items cost me just under £11 which isn’t bad and they should last a long time due to being metal. I used an old roll of thread seal tape (also known as PTFE tape and costs about 50p) that I had in the tool kit from when I had to repair the under-sink pipe seals when they were leaking in our previous home that we rented. I used the thread seal tape around the joint between the outside tap and the wall plate elbow to create a tight seal and to prevent leaks. So far so good : ) I then just used a block of wood drilled into the wall to help the tap sit flat and to prevent the hose pipe getting kinked. I had to use some steel washers to pack out the wall plate elbow to help it sit flat due to the connectors I used to attach the hose pipe to the outside.

Now, in regards to the connectors that I used to attach the hose pipe to the tap: I simply just used whatever various connectors I had lying around. It was a case of trial and error to find the correct ones, so I’m afraid I can’t be much help in that area. It really was a case of winging it : D I want to update all the connectors in the future with metal ones due to their longevity, but for now the plastic ones are doing the job well. I will also change all the connectors to screw type ones rather than the push click ones, as I feel the screw type ones are more secure and should prevent future leaks.

So it’s great to finally be able to water my plants thoroughly in the greenhouse. For the rest of the garden I would like to invest in a water butt (I’m thinking that two would be ideal) to increase my recycled water supply. But that’s another project for the future at some point. I need to consider their placement both for practicality and aesthetics as they don’t tend to be the most attractive looking garden features! Have any of you got water butts in your garden? Where do you keep/hide them? For the greenhouse, fresh water supply low in contaminants is the best for my young seedlings so I’m thrilled with the new tap.

I hope you enjoyed this post! Please let me know if you have any tips or advice in regards to insulating the pipes/taps! Do any of you have any recommendations on what types of connectors you use for your hose pipes to make them last?

Until next time, happy gardening 🙂

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Written by Bethany Wright at The English Meadow

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11 comments

  1. Genius! 😎 I hadn’t thought about insulating the hose. Not sure if that is likely to be a problem or not. I think a normal hosepipe probably has enough flex in it to cope with freeze/thaw cycles. Mine was outside like this all winter and didn’t seem to suffer. I turned the supply off over the winter anyway. That said, I imagine that copper pipe insulation, the foamy stuff used to lag pipes, would probably do the trick, with the added benefit of camoflaging the hose a bit.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes that could be a good idea! Thank you I will have to look in to it. Hey you’ll have to hook yourself a tap up if possible. I’ve found it really helps me keep on top of watering 🐳 I’d like to put in some waterbutts though. Have you got any water butts on your allotment?

      Like

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