By: Michael Williams
Does your lawn have dry spots? Does your lawn have areas that remain wet throughout the year? Have you ever walked outside to discover your irrigation system is over-spraying your house, walkways, and patio’s!!? Chances are you’re experiencing a very common occurrence I like to call ‘regular irrigation design.’
You might be asking yourself how could this happen when you hired a professional contractor or irrigation installer!?!?
Below are the most common reasons how and why irrigation is designed and installed poorly.
FORM OVER FUNCTION
Many designers choose form over function instead of marrying design with existing equipment or solutions in mind. All to often we see short, skinny strips of lawn that are over-sprayed. Tight, acute angles with lawn wedged between hardscapes and residences. Little to no buffer between built structures and turf forcing irrigation to spray homes and landscape beds.
IRRIGATION IS AN AFTERTHOUGHT
We repeatedly see architects and designers forget about irrigation altogether when creating landscapes. Planter beds and pots in the middle of hardscapes that must be hand watered, terraced & hillside designs that water runs quickly off of. Shrub & flower beds that are being over watered with spray heads rather than drip, causing mildew, overspray and wind-drift evaporation.
DESIGNER VS INSTALLER
Are you using a Landscape Architect, irrigation designer, or an installer/contractor? Any professional irrigation designer should be considering all site conditions when creating any irrigation plan. Sun aspect, slope, existing features, future features, underground utilities, and the list goes on. A professional designer will also produce drawings that must be legally followed by an installer. These drawings hold the installer accountable and will have standard pipe depths, nozzle types/sizes, head-to-head layout, zoning and run times, along with a year guarantee. As where a typical irrigation installer/contractor is looking to put in the bare minimum number of heads and piping, using only the equipment they have available in their yards or whatever is cheapest. Installer/contractors rarely warranty their installation and are not held to any standard when working for themselves.
All in all you’re ALWAYS better off hiring a trusty Landscape Architect to design your irrigation system. They’ll consider all elements and will create the most efficient system/design, leaving you happy and your landscape beautiful.
Irrigation questions? Give a shout anytime. Mike is here to help.