If you’re tired of tangled hoses, heavy watering cans, and remembering (or forgetting!) to water by hand, it may be time to consider installing a sprinkler system. Sprinkler system options range from the classic above-ground sprinkler to the more efficient and complex drip irrigation system. At the end of the day, the goal is to maintain a healthy lawn and a lush, thriving landscape. Consider the following sprinkler system options, then talk to a landscaping expert to figure out which one is right for you.
Your most basic and inexpensive option is the above-ground sprinkler, which is ideal for watering large, open expanses like lawns. Usually connected to a hose, the classic above-ground sprinkler can be purchased with a stationary or rotating head, and should be placed in a central location to cover as much ground as possible. The downside of these sprinklers is that a lot of water will be lost in the process (at times, 50-70%) and the watering is unlikely to be even. If you have flowerbeds, trees, or shrubbery that need gentle and attentive care, read on to explore more efficient watering options.
In ground pop-up sprinkler systems
A professional in ground sprinkler system will water your entire landscape on a scheduled timer. The sprinkler systems generally spray a large amount of water over a large amount of land, so they work best when the landscape requires uniform maintenance. Those interested in installing an in ground sprinkler system should work with a landscaping expert to determine an irrigation plan that’s right for your specific yard — water pressure and soil makeup must be checked, in addition to existing water, gas, and electric lines. For this type of system, trenches will need to be dug in order to place pipes 15-18” underground. Valves will be attached to control water flow, and then the appropriate sprinkler heads must be attached, in addition to wiring, a timer, and a backflow preventer. If you plan on using a traditional in ground sprinkler system, try to lay out your plants in groups — ones that need heavy watering, average watering, and little to no watering.
Drip irrigation systems
Drip irrigation systems are low-pressure systems that conserve water and deliver just the right amount to the different parts of your yard through flexible tubing connected to individual emitters. Drip systems are the most efficient watering option, as they lose the least amount of water through evaporation or overspray. Supply lines can lie directly on the ground and be covered by a thin layer of mulch, or remain exposed until the plants flourish and spread. More advanced landscapes that involve flowerbeds, vegetable rows, or shrubbery can benefit from drip irrigation systems, which are precise in the amount and method in which water is delivered. The controlled water flow also prevents weeds, as the in-between areas are not watered. If you already have an underground sprinkler system in place, you can work with a landscaping expert to convert it into a drip system. Pop-up sprinkler heads can easily be replaced with drip irrigation water emitters, which save water and water more efficiently.
There are various ways to maintain a healthy, green landscape. Do your research or consult a landscaping expert at Blue Tree to figure out which watering method is best for your yard.