One of the main reasons plants do not thrive well in some back yards is because they do not get an adequate water supply when they need it. Installing a sprinkler system in your backyard can do wonders to keeping your plants happy and hydrated during the summers. Truth be told, different areas of your property may need different sprinkler systems in order for them to be watered effectively.
According to gardening.about.com, the type of soil, including its composition and moisture retention properties, the dimensions of the area and the water saturation required are all important factors to consider when choosing sprinkler systems. The three types of sprinkler systems that are the most popular are rotor head, spray, and drip systems.
Before going into the different types of sprinkler systems, make sure you are purchasing something that is not too complicated if you are a beginner or do not have help installing it. It is always better to buy a simple sprinkler system that can accommodate add-ons as and when needed.
Rotor heads sprinkler systems are especially useful to water large areas like parks, lawns or golf courses uniformly. While their application rate can be considered less than that of many spray sprinklers with an average of only 0.6-0.8 inches of water saturation per hour. The advantage of this sprinkler system is that it requires less cycling as the most common types of soil have plenty of time to absorb the low quantities of water it distributes per cycle even though it is being constantly watered.
Rotor heads sprinklers are divided into single or double spray types. Apart from the common method of spurting water in a smooth stream, impact style units spray water in an upside-down cone formation simultaneously in all directions.
For smaller spaces and absorbent soils like sand composites, spray systems are ideal. They are especially useful if the area needs a large dosage of water in relatively short time, which is the usual for shrubs, flower beds and turf. The volume of water or application rate of each spray sprinkler varies significantly between systems, though the average is anywhere from 1.5-1.7 inches in an hour. Pop-up spray sprinklers pop out of the ground when watering and pipe-mounted sprinklers are stationary sprinkler systems.
Drip sprinkler systems or drip irrigation are generally used in non-turf areas. They ensure that only specific areas and plants are watered. Since they are so specific, they can be programmed to have an hourly application rate anywhere from 0.5- 24 gallons. Drip sprinkler systems consist of a set of large hoses that taper off into smaller offshoot tubes through which water drips straight into the soil near the plant. Two key advantages of drip systems is the ability to control the area they water and the lack of over spray on surrounding areas, keeping pavements and decks dry.
Whether it is a small flowerbed, a large kitchen garden or expansive front lawns that need to be watered or if you are away from home and need your plants watered regularly, choosing and investing in the right sprinkler system can make the task easy and efficient.