Installing a drip irrigation system is not hard and the systems are
designed to connect large gardening areas separated by non-gardening
areas. Usually you install the lines UNDER the paths. In the garden
areas, you can lay the lines on top of the soil (or bury them).
Netafim is a good product -- one of the oldest around (developed in
Israel years ago). There are other systems, too. I think Bluebird
is one. Timers can be included.
Soaker hoses can probably be used, too, but you'd have to use regular
hoses under the paths, etc. (where you don't want the water). The
trouble with using hoses is that they only come in certain sizes.
Drip irrigation is customized as you install -- very easy to cut the
lines and make connections, including "T" and "X" (3 and 4) lines
(If you want to see Netafim components up close, I would be happy to
demonstrate. I have some leftover materials from my former life as a
professional gardener, when I installed a number of Netafim
systems. I can't show you a working system, but I can show you how
it goes together. I'm in Evanston if you want to come up some time.)
Evanston Food Council (co-founder and chairperson)
Illinois Local Food and Farms Coalition (co-founder)
Illinois Local Food, Farms, and Jobs Council (co-founder)
Cook County Food System Steering Committee (member)