A study was conducted to elucidate the effect of water pillow (WP) irrigation method, a new alternative method to furrow irrigation, on the yield and water use efficiency (WUE) of hot pepper in a semi-arid climatic condition. In this research, treatments used were: (i) WP method and its 7-day irrigation interval (WP(7)) (ii) WP method and its 9-day irrigation interval (WP(9)), (iii) WP method and its 11-day irrigation interval (WP(11)) and (iv) furrow irrigation (FI) method and its 5-day irrigation interval (control) were employed. Although the plants were grown under different irrigation methods and interval conditions, there were no statistical differences in yield and biomass of hot pepper plants between FI and WP treatments (P < 0.05). Water use efficiency (WUE) and irrigation water use efficiency (IWUE) values significantly increased with the application of WP irrigation method (P < 0.05). The highest WUE and IWUE values obtained from WP(11) treatment in both years. As a result, we conclude that WP method is a way to save water and increase the yield in semi-arid areas where climatic conditions require repeated irrigation in the hot pepper production area. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.