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A well planned and maintained watering system will…

IRRIGATION Should I Sprinkle, Drip or Ooze? Pam Paulsen County Extension Agent, Horticulture K-State Research & Extension – Reno Co. A well planned and maintained watering system will…. Encourage healthy plant growth Deliver the required amount of water with limited waste

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A well planned and maintained watering system will…

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  1. IRRIGATIONShould I Sprinkle, Drip or Ooze?Pam PaulsenCounty Extension Agent, HorticultureK-State Research & Extension – Reno Co.

  2. A well planned and maintained watering system will… • Encourage healthy plant growth • Deliver the required amount of water with limited waste • Make your gardening life a little easier

  3. CHOOSING YOUR IRRIGATION SYSTEM • Factors • Size of area to water • Height and density of plants • Slope • Soil type • Traffic patterns • Maintenance requirements • Water source, including location & pressure • Cost

  4. HANDWATERING • Water small areas • Apply liquid fertilizers • Wash plants • Remove insects • Allows for close inspection of plants • Inconsistent coverage

  5. WATERING CANS • Metal • Copper or galvanized steel • Plastic • 2 gal. capacity • Spout should extend 1” above

  6. GARDEN HOSES • Hose materials affect: • Durability • Flexibility • Weight • Kinks • Brass fittings • Less potential to leak than plastic fittings

  7. GARDEN HOSE MATERIALS • Unreinforced vinyl • Inexpensive & light weight • Least durable and most prone to kinking • Rubber • Most durable, least prone to kinking • Heavy and most expensive • Reinforced vinyl/rubber • Flexible and durable • Not as heavy nor expensive as rubber

  8. GARDEN HOSE SIZES • Inside diameter = ½”, ⅝”, ¾” • end fittings are standard sized • Length = 25’ – 100’ • water pressure decreases with hose length • ½” Indoor/ Outdoor hoses

  9. GARDEN HOSE ACCESSORIES • Kink protectors • Storage devices • Hose pots, hangers, reels, carts • Hose guides



  12. HOSE ATTACHMENTS • Hose end nozzles • Quick couplers • Deep root irrigators

  13. HOSE MAINTENANCE • Use good washers to prevent leaks • Use filters if water contains sediments • Keep out of direct sun • Store hoses when not in use • Leave shut off valve open when not in use • Drain and store indoors in winter • Use hose menders to repair damage

  14. PORTABLE SPRINKLERS • Sprinkler buying tips: • Make sure coverage and pattern match area to be watered • If watering around tall plants or objects, get a sprinkler designed to sit on a tripod or stand • Metal or high impact plastic sprinklers are more durable than lightweight plastic or aluminum • Choose sprinklers with nozzles or emitters over punched holes

  15. OSCILLATING SPRINKLERS • Good for open areas with no overhanging branches • Can cover large areas (up to 60’x60’) • More water is lost to evaporation and wind • Better quality ones have a reversing spray bar to decrease overwatering at far points

  16. ROTATING SPRINKLERS • Water sprayed from holes in spinning arms • Square, circular or rectangular patterns • Coverage is not uniform

  17. STATIONARY SPRINKLERS • Water shoots through pattern of holes in top of sprinkler • Some have adjustable patterns • Coverage is not uniform

  18. IMPULSE SPRINKLERS • Circular pattern up to 100’ diameter • Adjustable pattern and distance • Most uniform • Most efficient

  19. TRAVELLING SPRINKLERS • Rotating arms with spray up to 50’ • Travels along hose up to 250’ • Fairly uniform coverage


  21. PERMANENT SPRINKLERS • Usually part of automatic watering systems • Risers • Permanently above ground • Easy to make taller or shorter • Good for areas of low traffic • Can be unsightly • Pop-ups • Housed underground • Raises up when water is on • Good for areas of higher traffic • Preserves aesthetics of the area

  22. PERMANENT SPRINKLERS • Spray heads emit a fixed spray • Good for smaller areas – 15’ radius • Work best at 30psi • Rotary heads (rotors) – rotate around sprinkler head • 45’ radius • Require 40 – 50 psi • Impact rotors • Less costly • Noisy • Gear driven rotors • More expensive • Quieter


  24. ROTORS

  25. SPRAY HEAD NOZZLES • Usually sold separately • Determines pattern • quarter to full circle • square or rectangle • High or low angle • Determines radius and volume of spray • Rotor heads have adjustable arcs and sizes

  26. SPRINKLER LAYOUT • Use as few sprinklers as possible • Always overlap sprays • Head to head coverage provides uniformity • Limit corners

  27. SOAKER HOSES • Good for areas where soil needs complete soaking • Flower and vegetable beds • Shrub rows • Root zone of a tree • Decreases weed growth • Not good for widely spaced plantings • Output depends on available water pressure

  28. SPRINKLER HOSES • Flat tubing with holes on one side • Sprays when holes are up • Good for lawns and open areas • Soaks when holes are faced down • Good for garden beds

  29. OOZE TUBING • Spongy rubber tubing with tiny pores • Inexpensive • Can be attached directly to water faucet • Provides uniform water distribution on level terrain for up to 50’


  31. USING SOAKER HOSES • Can be hidden under mulch &/or used with plastic mulches • Use a filter to limit clogging • Flush hose regularly by removing end cap • Use garden hose or pvc pipe over areas that don’t need watering • Store indoors during winter



  34. DRIP IRRIGATION • Also known as MICROIRRIGATION • Operates at low pressure (15-30psi or lower) • Adaptable to wide variety of gardens • Small, narrow gardens to acres of commercial gardens • Container gardens • Hanging baskets • Lawns

  35. DRIP IRRIGATION • Advantages • Wide variety of uses • Efficient use of water • Less weed growth • Can be automated • Disadvantages • Higher costs • Higher maintenance • More difficult installation

  36. DRIP IRRIGATION COMPONENTS • Control valves • Backflow preventers • Pressure regulators • Filters • Tubing • Fittings • Emitters

  37. BACKFLOW PREVENTERS • Prevents irrigation water from flowing back into water supply • Antisiphon valve (vacuum breaker) • Creates an air space at high point in irrigation system • Attach to hose bib • Most automatic control valves are coupled with a backflow preventer

  38. FILTERS • Used to prevent the small openings in the emitters from clogging • Screen filters of 120 to 200 mesh • In-line filters • Least expensive • Need to take apart water line to clean • Y & T filters • Easy removal for cleaning • Some come with flush valves


  40. PRESSURE REGULATORS • Used to prevent fittings from blowing apart and allows watering devices to work properly • Most are plastic and preset to maintain 15, 20, 25 or 30 psi. • Also available are brass systems that are adjustable • Can connect to piping or hose bib

  41. TUBING • Use PVC to connect water source to control valve and anywhere pressure is above 30 psi • Drip tubing • Polyethylene • UV resistance with 15-25 year life span • Flexible and easy to cut • Can be covered with mulch or buried a few inches underground • Usually in ½” diameter, though it can vary by manufacturer • Sold in rolls of 50 to 500’


  43. MICROTUBING • Spaghetti tubing • 1/4” or 1/8” available • Use polyethylene or heavyweight vinyl (lighter vinyl tends to fall out of its fittings) • Used in container plantings • Used to place emitters at individual plants

  44. FITTINGS • Couplings – to join two sections of tubing • Tees – to branch off in different directions • Elbows – to create corners • Adapters – to connect parts with pipe threads to parts with hose threads or connect tubing with PVC pipe, etc. • Drip fittings • Compression • Locking • Barbed


  46. BARBED FITTINGS • Used to connect emitters and microtubing to drip tubing • Force fitting into tubing

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