Presentation on theme: "WATER STEWARDS January 31,2012"— Presentation transcript:
1 WATER STEWARDS January 31,2012 DO IT YOURSELFDRIP IRRIGATION SYSTEMS
2 WHY CONSIDER? No great skill needed to install No trenching required No electrical connections necessaryNo precise pipe connections to makeInexpensive to installThe reasons to consider a drip irrigation system include:No great skill needed to installNo trenching requiredNo electrical connections necessaryNo precise pipe connectionsInexpensive installation costsBut before we start let’s talk a bit about some additional advantages
3 DRIP IRRIGATION ADVANTAGES Reduces loss through evaporationEliminates runoffDoes not spray leaves, petals, trunks thus reducing fungus potentialDoes not waste water irrigating surrounding areas (discourages weeds)So why consider a drip irrigation system?Here are some advantages of using a drip irrigation system:Reduces water loss through evaporation…the most common drip system does not spray water into the air and subject water to evaporationEliminates water runoff…a drip system will put the water where you need it in a slow and steady manner allowing the soil to absorb more available water.Does not spray leaves, petals or trunks thus reducing fungus potential…water residual on leaves is a leading cause of fungal attack to the plant.Does not waste water irrigating surrounding areas (discourages weeds)
4 ADVANTAGES Reduces overall time to water a given area Ensures consistent moisture to individual plantsWorks especially well on difficult hillsidesCan be used for small irrigation additionsA few more advantagesReduces overall time to water a given area…a drip system can water your garden all at once…saving timeEnsures consistent moisture to individual plants…drip systems puts water where you want it at each individual plantDrip systems work especially well on difficult hillsides…hard to hold areas… again with a slow/steady drip that allows the soil to absorb more and allows for deeper watering.Can be used to supplement existing irrigation or as a small addition
5 MINOR PROBLEMS Occasional minor adjustments do to: Dogs chewing Children kickingSpider web cloggingA drip system is more susceptible certain minor problems.Some of these may be:Dogs chewingChildren kickingSpider web clogging…but again systems are easily repaired if a problem occursNEXT LETS TALK ABOUT PLANNING BUT…BEFORE WE GET INTO PLANNING LETS DISCUSS SOME BASICS DRIP IRRIGATION COMPONENTS:½ “ Main line¼ “ micro lineEmitters…drip or spray
6 PLANNING Planning is essential Draw a design to include all your plantings under considerationDetermine the size and requirement of each circuit/zoneAbout 200’ max per circuitMatches your needs to your purchasesSo how do we get started…it’s simple but rememberPlanning…planning!…planning!…You need a rough design plan so you canmatch your needs to your purchases… This will save money and frustration.A circuit is a given length of tubing…closed at one end…In large installations the length of tubing may be limited…think about 200 feet per circuit.If you need more then this you simply install separate circuits
7 Here is a landscape plan… I am using this only to show the versatility of the potential for drip Irrigation systems and the variety of potential applications.Note the circuits or zones involved here.-Rear Flower bed w/tree Flower beds Side shrubs w/low shrubs in front-Deck w/Containers Vegetable beds -Large trees and shrubsI would not recommend to start with such an elaborate set of drip irrigation systems.Rather start slowly …simply…and get comfortable with how they operate and then expand as you see fit
8 PLANNING Think drip and/or spray systems Think “HYDROZONES”Think drip and/or spray systemsSprayer systems for closely spaced systemsDrip systems for widely spaced plantingsRegardless, the system selected should cover 50% of the root zoneThink about the soil type in your garden areaAs you are planning think hydrozones…places where drip emitters can go and places where spray emitters can go.Drip systems are used where plants are widely spaced…Spray emitters are best used for larger areas where ground covers are the main plant.Plants require different watering needs depending on size and type. You can get different water flow rates by using more emitters near a plant or using different size emitters…. I’ll show all this later .You plan a system that can cover about 50% of the root zone or drip line.Also consider the soil type…sandy or clay or something else?
9 Here are four common situations where solutions using drip irrigation would easily work . Top Left…A length of ¼” emitter line runs into each container from one main ½” tubing line.Top Right… spirals of ¼” emitter line circle each shrub again from a common main tubing line.Bottom Left…Parallel lines of ½”tubing run along the straight rows of vegetables. In this case the emitters are inserted directly into the main tubing line bypassing the need for ¼” emitter lines.Bottom Right… for ground cover…sprayers are used instead of drip emitters to keep large areasWhether it’s hilly, rocky, flat or on your back patio there is a design that will work…and will work for all plantings.SO NOW YOU HAVE PLANNED WHAT TO DO AND MEASUERED THE LENGTH OF YOUR CIRCUT/ZONEWHAT DO YOU NEED TO BUY??
10 Here is a key parts of a Drip Irrigation system set up that can connect to your garden hose: 1. A Anti siphon valve…to prevent any water from flowing back into your house system2. A Water Filter…not generally required for county water…maybe for well water3. A Pressure regulatorUsed to reduce typical home water pressure from 50PSI to PSI4. Main line tubing…2 common sizes….1/2’ and 3/8”½” can carry 320 GPH at about 20PSI3/8” can carry about 100 GPH at 20 PSI3/8” is more flexible (going around trees etc) and a bit more easy to hide5. Micro Tubing……..¼” tubing that is used to get drip or spray to a specific area6. Emitters…. These are either drip emitters or spray emitters7. End Caps…something to stop the water from just flowing out…just a folded line will do.NOTE … as mentioned earlier you should not put spray emitters and drip emitters on the same main lineAlso this set up shows an electrical connection for a timer but that’s not necessary…no electrical connections are necessary
11 Here is a picture of the main components: Simple splitter for a water line that allows you to easily have tow separate circuits or zonesNext is a water filter…this is usually not necessaryBelow is a anti-siphon valveAnd last is a pressure regulatorSo you can see the main component parts are pretty simple and not very expensive and they all simply screw into each other
12 TOOLS & OTHER BASIC MATERIALS NEEDED Tools…cutters and punchMaterials :Garden hose?Staking device1. Tools are pretty simple…Scissors…All you need is a strong scissors …something to cut flexible tubing with. Pruning sheers, metal cutters will also work and a punch for making a hole in the tubing.Punches vary in price from a few $ to about $14 or $15 depending on your needs2. Other MaterialsGarden Hose???…only to get to the garden area you wish to irrigate. ..if you need oneSimple stakes are available to simply hold down the main line…some use cut coat hangersPRETTY SIMPLE!
13 Fertilizer injector …needs anti-siphon valve OPTIONAL UPGRADESFilterTiming deviceFertilizer injector …needs anti-siphon valveAll sorts of interesting toysThese are optional pieces of equipment you may want to add to the system later…A water filter might be needed if you have well water otherwise it’s probably not necessaryTimers…you can buy a variety of inexpensive mechanical timing devices that allow automatic wateringFertilizer injectors allow you to add fertilizer when you water. The anti siphon valve must be added if you are going to use a fertilizer injector.Lets get a bit more detailed about the some other materials available.NEXT SLIDE
14 TUBING & FITTINGS ½” main tubing 2 wall thicknesses .052 and .060 match fittings to wall thickness3/8” main tubingTUBINGNote… main tubing is generally sold as ½” or 3/8 “…Fittings are larger plastic pieces that connect tubing parts togetherThe inside wall diameter of ½’” tubing comes in two sizes will be either .052” or .060” .This smaller tubing size (i.e. .052) is easier to punch and easier to bed around corners (although using a small inexpensive right angled fitting will work just as well)Bottom line make sure your fittings are compatible inside diameter of the tubing.Anyone you purchase from will offer appropriate compatible fittingsThe 3/8” tubing holds less water but is easier to bend and punch a hole in
15 TUBING AND FITTINGS FITTINGS (i.e. connectors) Used to connect pieces of tubingFittings are color coded:Red fittings for 3/8” tubingBlue and green for 1/2” tubingThree insert typesCompressionBarbedlockingFittings are also called connectors and can be used to:make a branch off the main line,or make a right angle,or a tee crossingor as an insert to add a ¼” microtubing line.Fittings are usually color coded for the size of line …1/2” or 3/8”.Into the fitting you can then insertMore main line tubingeither a emitter directlyor a fitting to connect a microtube lineFittings come with different locking mechanisms-Barbed fittings are easily used and just are pushed into the punched hole.-A locking type fitting or compression fitting is easier if you have limited hand strengthAn assortment of elbows, tees, crosses and step downs are available.
16 EMITTERS & SPRAYERS Emitters let the water drip onto the plant roots Generally come in three sizes½ gallon per hour1 gallon per hour2 gallons per hourHave barbed ends to fit into micro tubingColor coded…color end into tubingAlso sprayers in ¼, 1/2, ¾ and full turnAlso available as a pre-constructed line with emitters attached1. Emitters direct and control the water flow to the planthave a barbed end to insert directly into a main tubing line or into the end of a microtubing section.Come in a variety of flow rates ranging from about 1/2gal/hour to 3-5 gal/hour.Some deliver a small flow of water rather then a drip…this may be useful for sandy soils or in containers with a porous mixture of soils.Can be bought individually or as a unit that includes the emitter,(a staking device and a filter to keep spiders out of the emitter).2. If you consider a pre-assembled emitter lines use the following guidelines:.The ½” line size is good for hedges, shrubs, vegetable gardens and densely planted flower gardensUse a ¼” line for window boxes and large containers.3. There are also spray emitters available….come in quarter, half and full patternsdiffering water flow sizes.Pop up sprayers are also available..As mentioned earlier spray emitters need to be on a separate main line from drip emitters.
17 SOME ADDITIONAL ITEMS Punches Goof Plugs Stakes PUNCHES Purchasing an inexpensive punch will make the later tasks easier…3 are shown here.The blue/white handled one is the most expensive. The smaller punch costs the least.GOOF PLUGSAlso available are ”goof plugs” if you put an emitter in the wrong spot…simply install a goof plug and move on. Goof Plugs can be used to make changes later to your design.STAKESStakes like those shown here will be needed to hold the drip tubing and microtubing in place. Make your ownAll of these materials a pretty inexpensive.SO HOW DO WE ASSEMBLE ALL THESE PARTS
18 Vegetables -widely spaced 1-2 GPH At base of plant Flower Beds 1 GPH Output rateNumber of emittersPlacementVegetables -close spacing½-1 GHP1Every 12”Vegetables -widely spaced1-2 GPHAt base of plantFlower Beds1 GPHGround CoversAt base of each plantShrubs2-3 ft tall1-2At plant baseShrubs and Trees3-5 ft tall212” opposite sides5-10ft tall2 GPH2-32 feet from trunk10-20 ft tall3-43 feet apart at drip lineTreesOver 20 ft tall6 or more4 feet apart at drip lineLOOKING AT YOU PLAN…determine the emitters you need…Here are some recommended spacing and emitter volumesDon’t worry about being exact…it’s easy to make changes or corrections later…note the more emitters at the base of the plant the more drip irrigation the plant receives.Recall the comment about covering 50% of the root or drip lineBe guided by plant size and watering needs.3. A word of caution…in James City County by far more plants are lost due to over watering then any other disease on insect problem. Using a simple moisture meter will be a good guide for determining if your plants, trees, shrubs actually need water. Moisture meters can be purchased locally and cost about $6-7
19 INSTALLATIONEach main line (1/2”…large diameters) diameter has a maximum length…200’Each micro line (1/4”) has a maximum number of emittersIf possible try to connect emitters directly to the larger drip tubing lines.A few comments about installation:You need to be aware of the length of main line tubing for each line.Each main line (1/2”…large diameters) diameter has a maximum length. I mentioned earlier that about 200 feet would be the maximum length of each separate circuit. The next slide will be a little more specific about this.Each micro line (1/4”) has a maximum number of emittersIf possible try to connect emitters directly to the drip tubing larger lines¼’ size microtubing serves a purpose but having too many is a nuisance… so as much as possible put emitters directly into larger linesThe following chart will help…
20 MAXIMUM TUBING LENGHTS DRIP TUBINGDiameterFlow rateMaximum LengthPolyethylene Tubing½”320 GPH200 ft3/8”100 GPH100 ft¼”15 GPH25 ftHeavy weight vinyl10 GPH20 ftOverall MAIN DRIP LINE TUBING has a maximum length.Here I am showing the maximum length of the 1/2” line and a 3/8” line.This is the total length of the line so if you run a garden hose your water faucet you need to take that length into consideration as well.If your needs are greater then these recommended lengths then simply create two or three lines rather then one.You can determine your actual flow rate by measuring the time to fill a gallon bucket (after you have installed a pressure reducer) directly from your outdoor water faucet.The flow rates shown here are measured in gallons per hour so adjust your calculations accordingly.General rule...don’t exceed 200’ of a ½” drip line…just start a new circuit.…Don’t exceed 100’ of 3/8” main line…1/4” micro-line can only handle 15 GPH…that’s the limit of emitters
21 HELPFUL TIPS Allow ½” poly to sit in the sun Buy a good punch Measure twice …cut onceBy allowing ½’ poly to sit in the sun…it will become warm and pliable…the plastic will soften…easier to punch a hole intoBuying a good punch will make life a lot easier especially if you will be working in awkward placesJust like sewing or any activity…measuse twice…cut once
22 Maximum Number of Emitters To determine the maximum number of emitters on each line:For each ½” line add up the water volume of the emitters…maximum volume of emitters is 320 GPHFor each ¼” micro line maximum volume is 15 GPHThe limit of the number of emitters on the length of line is controlled by the total water flow in that line.The maximum amount of water flow in a ½” drip line is 320 Gallons Per HourSimply add up all the emitters ( ½ gph, 1gph, 3gph etc) and do not exceed 320gph in the entire circuit .¼” microtubing line is about 15 Gallons per hour… so no micro tubing line should be more then 15 GPHRemember each emitter or sprayer has a specific volume flow rate….measured in gallons per hour.
23 FINDING A SUPPLY SOURCE LocalLowe’s and Home DepotInternet sourcesThe Drip StoreSprinkler WarehouseDrip Works USASo if your interested in drip irrigation…the next question you may have is… where do I find suppliers?Lowe’s and Home Depot will in season sell kits containing all the necessary materials but be sure to have a plan first that identifies all the materials you need…so you can get more tubing emitters (sprayers drip or other types) plus other materials as you may need.There are lots of internet supplies… Just Google “drip irrigation supplies” and all the supplies you ever need will appear.Here are some internet source that I found helpful…there are many more.Book titled “Sprinklers and Drip Systems” put out by Sunset Books that has all the information presented here. It costs about $20.00.I hope this discussion will dispel some of the myths and mystery of putting in a drip irrigation system.It’s really easy… and the system is practically goof proof. …make a mistake and just use a goof plug and move on…So try it and you can help conserve water…saving both money and time.Thanks for your interest…QUESTIONS?
26 WATER INFORMATIONA typical area of 20’X40’ (800 sq. ft.) requires about 4000 gallons of water per monthGarden hoses deliver:Dia. Hose Flow gal/hr Hrs of watering1/2 “ hrs/mo5/8” hrs/mo3/4” hrs/moAnother consideration is your current typical watering requirements.I have taken a common size a 20X 40’ area and calculating the watering needs per month.It’s about 6000 gallons per month…hopefully all of it comes naturally from rain…but given our area’s general inclination to be in drought conditions, we most often need to supplement the water using some form of hand watering or irrigation on this garden area.Garden hoses can do this but depending on the diameter size of your hose, it takes a while to get this task done in a months time. Depending on natural rains this could range from about 13 hours of hand watering to as low as about 6 hours.