Preparing for Summer Water Usage in the Landscape
As the Phoenix heat creeps up into the triple digits, it’s essential for plant material to have more water to meet their needs. Today we’re going to review some ways to get your irrigation system up to snuff before the scorching weather hits.
Now is the time to do a review of your irrigation system to make sure it’s performing at its best. Plants which become stressed early in the summer season may never fully recover from it, so we have to check our irrigation systems earlier and more often than most of the rest of the country. Lack of rainfall and arid conditions also make checking the irrigation system essential.
Drip system review
Start with the drip system. Turn on each valve manually and check every dripper to make sure it’s operating correctly. A drip system review is when an understanding of plant watering needs comes in handy. Watch for signs of plant wilt. Look for areas of abnormal weed growth in the area, which may indicate a leak in the line or a maverick dripper.
Pay particular attention to new transplants and plants or trees which have had a tremendous amount of growth since the system was installed. Is the amount of water they’re getting going to be adequate for the summer? If not, add drippers or increase the GPH of emitters.
Sprinkler system review
Check each sprinkler to make sure they’re working. Look for problems such as crooked sprinkler heads, nozzles which are clogged or won’t pop up, and inadequate coverage. Check sidewalks to make sure they aren’t being hit with overspray. Look for dry spots in the lawn and areas which look like they’re being overwatered.
Set the system to water early, before the sunrise. But, if an area has runoff before the water has time to reach the roots, cut back the time and run the irrigation in that area twice.
Most valves will require more run time as the summer progresses. The trick is to run the system long enough for plant material to thrive without overwatering. Smart sensor technology will eliminate common watering time problems.
If you suspect a leak, now is the time to find and fix it, before longer irrigation run times make it more wasteful. We will have more on leaks in another blog.
Hire a pro
If you don’t feel comfortable doing a full system review on your own, an irrigation specialist can troubleshoot and make sure your irrigation system is performing optimally. They can advise you on any needed changes, as well. Your plants and grass will thrive without wasting water or having wet areas on sidewalks or patios.
Living Water Irrigation is a Phoenix-area irrigation company specializing in professional sprinkler and drip irrigation and landscape lighting installation and repair. Call 623-299-2996 today!