Tag: drip irrigation

Square Foot Gardening

Orbit Irrigation traveling sprinkler

With processed foods increasingly prevalent, many people are seeking natural and organic options for their diet.  But a trip to your local grocery store will reveal that although going green may be healthier for your diet, it does little for your budget.

To combat these high prices many people are growing their own produce and square foot gardening is making it easy.

What is Square Foot Gardening?

Square foot gardening is an innovative approach to traditional single-row gardening.  At its basic level, square foot gardening consists of a 4′ x 4″ raised planter with 16 units.  Each square foot unit is used to plant a different crop.  This system takes less work, is easy to maintain, wastes less water and materials (such as seeds), and yields plenty of crops.

For tips on how to set up your own square foot garden, click here.

Watering Your Square Foot Garden

There are a number of ways to water your square foot garden, they include: Bucket watering, Hose watering, Soaker Hose watering, Sprinkler System watering, and Drip Irrigation.*

Bucket Watering

This includes a large bucket of sun-warmed water and a cup.  Water each plant with a cup of water.  Although this method is inexpensive, it is tedious work that someone must attend to each day.

Hose Watering

Use a gentle hose-end attachment to water each plant.  Setbacks to this method include increased risk of molds and fungi (due to the leaves getting wet) and the fact that this system is not automated.

You can browse Orbit’s hose-end products here.

Soaker Hose Watering

A soaker hose is a porous hose that allows water to seep slowly into the soil.  It is less work, but you still have to remember to turn it on—to combat this issue you can try one of Orbit’s hose faucet timers.  While this method protects the leaves of your plants, you cannot control which plants receive more water and it is still difficult to ensure even watering.

Sprinkler System Watering

Rather than try to water your garden individually, you can adjust your sprinkler system to also cover your square foot garden.  This approach is convenient because it is automated; however, you are less likely to receive even coverage and the leaves of your plants will be watered, increasing your risk for mold and fungus.

Drip Irrigation

Many square foot gardeners feel that drip irrigation is the ideal method of watering your garden.  Drip systems allow the water to soak directly into the soil with the added convenience of flow adjustment for individual plants.  These systems are also automated, ensuring consistent watering.

Despite what some people may think, drip irrigation is fairly simple to set up.  For help and tips you can check out Orbit’s Free Installation Guide.  Or you can view our Drip Made Easy videos.

 

As always, if you have any questions, please give us a call at: 1 (800) 488-6156.  Good luck with your square foot garden and enjoy a warm and healthy summer!

*Special thanks to: My Square Foot Garden

How Much do Automatic Sprinkler Systems Cost? Part V

Do you need drip irrigation or garden valves in certain areas?

Drip irrigation is a very cost effective to install a system and it also happens to be a very cost effective way to water, as well. The valve, filter, and pressure regulator combination that is required for a drip zone will cost more than a control valve for a spray head or rotor zone, but the overall cost of the zone is much lower, especially if you are using emitter tubing.  Drip zones require careful planning, but are well worth the effort.

Do you need a sprinkler timer that can automatically calculate the amount of water to apply?

The sprinkler timer or “controller” can be a fairly big driver of the cost of your sprinkler system, especially if a professional contractor is installing it. The latest trend is toward “smart controllers” which automatically calculate the amount of water to apply for a given geographic location at point of time in the season. Smart controllers help reduce the amount of overwatering while helping ensure survival of your landscape in the hottest months. The downside to these controllers is that they cost more, are harder to install (they require the mounting of sensors on a roof or other unobstructed location), and more difficult to program.  Surveys of homeowners show that, while they like the concept of smart controllers, the complexity of operating them leads many homeowners to turn off the smart features and use them as a regular controller. Perhaps over time these controllers will become easier to use.

Do you need a rain sensor to automatically delay or shut off the system if it is raining?

The addition of a rain sensor to your system is pretty much a no-brainer. You can set these sensors to delay or shut off watering once they detect a certain amount of rainfall. This saves you from wasting water on rainy days and the annoyance of fines (in some communities) and public embarrassment as neighbors become more aware of water conservation.

Drip Irrigation System Products

parts of drip kit

Conservation.

Convenience.

Appearance.

All of these are important when you want to make sure your yard, lawn, or garden is the best it can be.

The advanced and elegant drip watering systems from Orbit Irrigation Products, Inc. provide you all three of these.

How does drip irrigation work?

Drip irrigation products conserve water by slowly and accurately applying the right amount of water to plants’ root zones instead of non-growth areas. This means less water is lost to evaporation and runoff.

Also, Orbit drip irrigation systems are more convenient because they eliminate hand watering of small areas and reduce weed growth.

Orbit drip irrigation systems are sold in kits and are available online and in many retail outlets. These kits make it easy to install yourself, and you can also use the drip components to customize your irrigation system.

What other benefits do you see to having a drip irrigation system installed in your yard, lawn, or garden area?