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  • Writer's pictureCountry Girl Gardens

Proper Irrigation Practices

In hopes that warmer weather is coming, have you considered what type of irrigation practices you will be using in your landscape this year? I have brought some top tips to you so that you can have the best irrigated space this year.

When it comes to irrigating your garden or lawn spaces this year you will want to make sure you are aware of what type of water requirements your plants and your yard need. You will also want to be aware of the different zones and micro climates of your landscape in order to provide the proper amount of water. You will want to make sure that you avoid mixing plants that have different water requirements because this could be something that kills plants when it comes to over or under watering. You will also want to make sure that you’re avoiding having one of your watering stations being set to water a sunny and shady spot at the same time. Doing so will result in improper watering for the specified plants in that area.

Knowing your watering system is an important step. Learning how to correctly set up and use the irrigation controller can be a game changer. Making sure you are educated on your system and if it has multiple settings. Does it have multiple settings? Is the watering schedule easily adjustable? These can come in handy as months change from rainy months to hot dry months. You will also want to be aware of the watering zones your system has when it comes to your gardening landscape as opposed to your turf. Knowing watering zones can be important when problem solving any type of watering issue. But you will also want to make a list of all your watering stations, where they irrigate to and the proper settings for those areas.

System pressure is a common issue with watering systems because if you lack the proper pressure for system you’re running this can create distorted patterns in the landscape which could lead to under or over watering. This would then require you to run shorter times and or hand water some areas due to improper water distribution. Making sure you have the proper pressure will minimize wind effects and make sure that all areas of the landscape are receiving the proper amounts of water and you won’t have to worry about runoff issues.

Soil moisture and rain sensors can come handy when they integrated into your watering system because it prevents you from overwatering specific areas. When you have a rain sensor this will allow the sensor to override the watering system to prevent overwatering an area that does not actually require water. Moisture sensors trigger the irrigation system when the soil has reached the given soil moisture levels. This also allows the system to stop unneeded irrigation and will save you water in the long run.

Cycling your sprinklers is something to be aware of when you are noticing that the soil isn’t absorbing the water quick enough. This sometimes can be caused by the makeup of the soil sometimes when it has more of a clay makeup. So when you cycle your system you will want to run the cycle for about 10-15 minutes or until you notice the water is starting to puddle, then you will want to stop the cycle for about an hour to give the water a chance to actually soak into the area and then once this is done you can run the cycle again. This is something you can do until your area has received the adequate water requirements needed for the plants. This is known as the run-stop-run cycle.

Repairing physical problems with your system in a quick manner to be sure you are still getting the accurate amounts of water to your zones. Most of the common repairs for systems tend to be broken components such as risers, sprinkler heads, improperly designed or spaced heads. You will also want to be aware of the sprinkler rotation as to be sure you are not watering your sidewalks, driveways and other areas that do not require sprinklers to hit.

Avoiding runoff from your irrigation system is something to be aware of because allowing this to happen can actually carry any applied fertilizer away from the area in which it’s needed. Pesticides can also be swept down to the street and end up depositing in storm drains, which can end up polluting and damaging water quality.

So when it comes to irrigation systems sometimes things can get a little tricky or overwhelming when you aren’t to familiar with them. Luckily at Country Girl Gardens they are all skilled a variety of irrigation systems and would love to lend a hand in understanding how to operate or fix your systems. So if you ever have any questions or need some assistance go ahead and give us a call!

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