Sunday, June 30, 2013

Drip Irrigation

Watering your lawn and garden is often not an easy task, and it can also get very expensive and waste water. Drip irrigation offers an efficient and cost-effective way to water your landscaping.

What is drip irrigation?
This type of watering system has been used in dry areas of the country for some time, and the Houston area fits the bill. It applies water slowly at the plant’s roots where it is most needed. Plants are over 90% efficient in using the water applied, while other irrigation methods like sprinklers are only 65% to 75% efficient. Also, evaporation and runoff are reduced. Homeowners most often incorporate drip irrigation into the bedding areas of their landscaping, as well as for watering shrubs and trees.

What are the benefits?
  • The quality and productivity of plants improve.
  • The areas between plants remain dry, reducing weed growth.
  • The efficiency of drip systems saves money and water.
  • Leaking of water and nutrients below the roots is minimized.
  • Uneven ground is properly irrigated.
  • Leaves, fruit, and stems of plants do not contact the water as much, preventing disease.

Is operation and upkeep difficult?
Like sprinkler systems, drip irrigation may be set to run automatically or controlled manually. Manual control allows you to decrease watering after rainfall. Most drip irrigation systems are designed to run every day without rain, and it may run once or twice a day. Watering your landscaping early in the morning allows less evaporation, while evening watering increases your landscaping’s risk for disease. Maintenance of your drip irrigation systems involves regular checks for proper function, and most companies provide detailed guidelines for you to follow to keep your system running smoothly.

What about the cost?
As you might guess, the cost of a drip irrigation system varies according to the size of your target area and the materials needed for your system. No matter what the size of your space, there are upfront costs for items required in every system such as the pressure regulator and backflow preventer. Ask Outdoor Development for an estimate for incorporating drip irrigation into your own home’s landscaping.

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