Drip Irrigation Benefits and RestrictionsPosted on March 21, 2014
As watering districts and cities in our service area are maintaining watering restrictions or proposing to institute new restrictions, drip irrigation is beginning to become an alternative that many people are becoming more and more interested in for their gardens, flowerbeds and foundations. When watering restrictions are in place, most cities allow watering using drip irrigation when aboveground watering is not permitted. The permissible use of drip irrigation can differ city to city and can range from no restrictions at all to being allowed for up to two hours per day.
Creating separate zones for drip irrigation will allow for a more precise and frequent watering schedule. Drip irrigation is a great alternative to standard pop-up, rotor or other above ground sprinkler heads for several reasons.
- Water droplets will stay off plant leaves. Droplets of water act like a magnifying glass and can actually burn a plant when the sun’s rays are intense.
- Water will promote root growth by getting water directly to the roots. Excess water sprayed on top of the ground typically does not travel deep enough into the root zone to promote root growth.
- Easier to protect the foundation of the house. Being able to have more freedom when watering will allow the foundation to get water when it needs it to maintain its equilibrium.
- Watering is not restricted. Plants will actually receive more water than watering with a sprinkler system twice per week and watering can be scheduled for any time of the day.
- Watering will be more efficient. Rather than watering the entire plant and surrounding soil, water is applied directly to the area of the plant that needs it, the roots.
- Water usage will be reduced. By not wasting water that is over sprayed beyond the flower beds and gardens and by directing the application of water to the root zone, water usage will actually be reduced.
Although drip irrigation has very few restrictions, if any, some cities in our service area do recommend that property owners make it standard practice to monitor total water usage. Some cities may even require a homeowner to pay a surcharge on the amount of water if it reaches a certain number of gallons used per month.
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