We’ve all heard that putting in an irrigation system is the way to go, but how do you decide what you need, especially if you’re still putting in your yard and are not quite sure what the final plan will look like? We keep changing our minds about what we want; where and how many of this or that we want to grow.
Not only that, there are new developments every year, or at least that I hear about, so keeping up with options can take a lot of time. I am actually starting to look at putting in a permanent system in the backyard, as we are completing the vegetable garden section of the yard.
The best thing you can do is put together a landscape design. In this day and age of water conservation is a good idea to plan a water wise yard. A great resource for planning water efficient designs is http://www.epa.gov/watersense/outdoor/landscaping_tips.html.
Finding irrigation supplies is the first trick. Local big box centers usually have some supplies, but they may not be the best quality or the latest technology. For instance I found an indoor controller online today. It looks very interesting and I’m going to have to do some research on it, as the controller we have is quite old, relies on a computer to run it, with an interface that any new computer we buy will not have. It is moving into the realm of old technology rapidly.
If your yard has stabilized and you pretty much know where trees, shrubs, perennials, annuals, and grass are going to be grown, you can just make a list of the various supplies you’ll need, such as the length of hose; emitter or sprinkler heads, and the various patterns you’ll need; control boxes; sensors; valves, fittings, and tools, etc. You’ll need to take measurements and then plan for a little extra, as well as some mistakes, when buying the tubing. Having many different emitter and sprinkler head styles is important, too, so that you can be sure to cover every single area. You don’t want to end up with a dead plant of grass patch. You’ll need to know your water pressure, as well, because some systems will require you to lessen the pressure, while others may not run well if you have a low pressure system like we do.
If you have questions about what will work, any company should help you sort it out. Doing it yourself will save you a lot of money, but in the end, if you just don’t have the skills, having it installed may be the best, albeit much more expensive, option.