One of the most difficult things for landscapers designing new garden areas is setting up a decent irrigation system. Water restrictions are common throughout Australia, and it’s therefore extremely important to make sure that you’re irrigation system is efficient, effective and installed properly.
If you fancy yourself as a bit of a handyman, you might decide to install your own irrigation system. While this can save you a bit of money on landscaping costs, it’s important to do some research before you begin. If you don’t, you might find that you’re simply wasting water and that you’re plants aren’t benefiting as much as they should.
With this in mind, I’ve put together a few tips to help you get the most out of your irrigation system. Consider the following:
Make Sure You’re Not Irrigating The Road
Nothing annoys me more than driving down a quiet street in the middle of the day and seeing water flowing down the road from poorly placed sprinklers. To put it simply, this is a terrible water of water – water that you’re paying for with your hard earned dollars!
The whole point of setting up an automatic irrigation system is to make things easier for yourself. Make sure that you’re sprinklers are well placed (if you have to use sprinklers) and that they’re only watering the areas you want watered. Make sure that they aren’t spraying the street, paths or any other irrelevant area.
Build Barriers To Stop Water Flowing Away
Even if your sprinklers and drippers are well placed, you might find that some of the water is flowing away before it has a chance to soak into the ground. You can stop this happening by building small barriers to contain water so that it has a chance to soak in. This can be done in a number of ways, including:
- By building decorative wooden or stone edges.
- By simply manipulating the soil layout so that water doesn’t flow in the wrong directions.
Alternatively, improve the quality of your soil so that water can soak in before it has a chance to flow away.
Choose Your Watering Times Carefully
You’ve probably heard this before, but it’s extremely important to water your garden at the right time of day. Try and water either early in the morning or in the evening. This will reduce wastage through evaporation, and will allow plants to utilise a higher portion of the water you give them. Personally, I prefer to water in the evening so my plants have the whole night to take up the water I give them.
Irrigation can be a great tool – when it’s used properly. However, if you don’t use it properly, irrigation can lead to a lot of wasted water, waster time and an unhealthy garden. Water at the right time of the day, and above all, make sure that the water you’re giving your plants is actually getting to them – not flowing away down the road!