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rckowal

New Member

1

Wednesday, July 20th 2011, 5:26pm

Garden Irrigation Systems

I need your advice please. I'm thinking of installing a basic DIY irrigation system for my vegetable & flower garden. But before I start, I thought it would be a good idea to seek some professional guidance.

I've already done research on the subject so I have a pretty good understanding of what's involved & many of the products out there. At this point, it appears to me that I should use a combination of 1/4" porous soaker (or drip emitter) tubing for the vegetable rows and some drip emitters for other individual plantings (shrubs, perennial flowers, etc.). These would all be supplied by a 1/2" poly tube (about 125' long) that will be connected to an existing 1" lawn sprinkler supply line which also has a hose connector on it. Here are some of the decisions that still need to be made where your thinking will be helpful.

1. Which brand is preferred? Rain bird & Orbit both have starter kits that can be expanded by adding more tuning & other options. Are there other brands worth considering?

2. Which is preferred - very flexible 1/4" soaker (Orbit) or drip emitter (Rain Bird) tubing for the vegetable rows?

Best regards, Richard

servicetechMA

Advanced Member

2

Wednesday, July 20th 2011, 7:19pm

Rain Bird is extremely advanced in the irrigation world,they have clocks you put zip codes into to get weather info and all kinds of other info.Although i much prefer the HUNTER PGP over the 5000 RAINBIRD for a sprinkler head. Thats besides the point.
I would go hands down with RAINBIRD Drip,emitters every 12'' or so, .9 gallons an hour.its what we use and it seems to be very good. Orbit is a fine brand too,more homeowner stuff though.I know about Rain Bird drip though so thats what I would recommend.
Drip works very good for plants,bushes. the emitters are nice to that you can use. my 2cents. good luck

rckowal

New Member

3

Wednesday, July 20th 2011, 8:03pm

Rain Bird is extremely advanced in the irrigation world,they have clocks you put zip codes into to get weather info and all kinds of other info.Although i much prefer the HUNTER PGP over the 5000 RAINBIRD for a sprinkler head. Thats besides the point.
I would go hands down with RAINBIRD Drip,emitters every 12'' or so, .9 gallons an hour.its what we use and it seems to be very good. Orbit is a fine brand too,more homeowner stuff though.I know about Rain Bird drip though so thats what I would recommend.
Drip works very good for plants,bushes. the emitters are nice to that you can use. my 2cents. good luck
Thanks for the helpful reply. I lean towards Rain Bird as well. I have the 1800 popups in my backyard but I went with the Hunter gear heads in front. Both have worked very well for me. In fact, the system was installed 22 years ago. Some parts of course have worn out & been replaced.

Regardless, have you had any experience with porous soaker tubing? If so, pros & cons? One other point, I live in Michigan so I'm wondering how an above ground drip irrigation system will hold up going through the winter? Blowing it out is no problem, but would it be necessary to take it up & store it until spring - especially the 125 foot supply line?

Best regards, Richard

servicetechMA

Advanced Member

4

Thursday, July 21st 2011, 5:15am

Your welcome. No, it doesnt need to be removed in the winter,it gets blown out like everything else. If you want to be extram carful,which some people who do things themselves like to do. Just remember where your endcaps are.They are figure 8's that go over the end of the drip line,you slide it on the drip,kink the pipe,then slide the small kinked end up through the other half of the 8. if you pull that end cap off while blowing it out,youll get every spec of water out. Again,this is not necessary at all.
Now,if your talking about the soaker tubing thats black and POROUS,All i know is that you dont have to take it out in the winter. I would definately go with drip though given the option. You can DO ANYTHING YOU WANT with it. If you add plants,a T and a figure 8 is all you need to run a new line anywhere you want,the natural curve of the drip can be twisted to make some crazy turns and all kinds of stuff. you can poke holes in it for the emitter tubing.
The thought of going to a $250,000 backyard with hundreds of plants and trees and bushes,with 6'' of mulch. And running drip and bubblers everywhere makes me cringe, I do service and re works so i dont do much of that anymore,but ive taken classes on drip,and i will say thats all i would use on my system. Good luck

rckowal

New Member

5

Thursday, July 21st 2011, 9:47am

This is really good info! And the price is right (grin).

I don't understand the hi-lighted comment, please explain. "If you add plants, a T and a figure 8 is all you need to run a new line anywhere you want, the natural curve of the drip can be twisted to make
some crazy turns and all kinds of stuff. you can poke holes in it for
the emitter tubing
."

The reason I was considering 1/4" porous mini soaker hose is that it is really soft & flexible; it's limp like wet spaghetti. See this video link on this page: http://www.mrdrip.com/minibulksoakerhose.htm. Rain Bird doesn't offer it but Orbit & other suppliers do.

Best regards, Richard

This post has been edited 1 times, last edit by "rckowal" (Jul 21st 2011, 9:54am)


Wet_Boots

Supreme Member

Posts: 3,873

Location: Metro NYC

6

Thursday, July 21st 2011, 2:24pm

1/4-inch hose flows very little water, so Rainbird only wants to see it as a short bit of tubing fed from an emitter on a larger pipe.

rckowal

New Member

7

Thursday, July 21st 2011, 8:35pm

Thanks! OK, that make sense now.

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