Jason L
Cool Member
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2014 5:13 pm
Location: South East Michigan

Watering setup question

Last year I had problems with watering. I was either over or under watering or a combination of both. So I thought I would do something more than manually watering using a nozzle like I did last year. This year I planted roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, leaf lettuce, romaine, garlic, spanish onions, blue lake bush beans, kentucky wonder pole beans, green bell peppers (turn red), sweet banana peppers, medium (hot) banana peppers, and jalepeno peppers. Garden layout attached, 8 foot side i think may actually be more like 9 foot. The hot peppers are planted in the rectangle black plastic planter boxes (10"D,36"L,8"W) I used last year for other things. This will allow the soil to get hotter and give me the freedom to place them since I ran out of room in the main garden area. Lowe's has the following I was thinking of getting for watering the garden:

https://www.orbitonline.com/products/di ... /view/2376 (model 27752 discontinued)
https://www.orbitonline.com/products/ho ... d-hardware (model 24723 current)

I don't know what the differences are between these two. Both are the same price.

https://www.lowes.com/pd_19002-30775-880 ... d=50328293

This sprinkler has a setting option for 11 foot wide by more than enough long to water the garden. I'll probably have to adjust how much I turn the faucet so that it doesn't water beyond the edges of the garden too much.

The timer for a single hose only is almost as much as the system that allows for up to 4 connections. We would use this faucet to also water the grass when needed. With and/or without the timer controlling the lawn watering. What I'm not sure of is how often I should set the timer and for how long? And if this is a good choice of timer and sprinkler? Thank you for any help.
Attachments
garden.jpg

pepperhead212
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1580
Joined: Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:52 pm
Location: Woodbury NJ Zone 6B

Re: Watering setup question

I can't help you with the sprinkler, as I use drip emitters on everything, but I can offer my opinion on the timers. I used an Orbit 4 outlet timer for many years, before it finally bit the dust (it was even before the discontinued one! LOL), and I started looking into replacing it last year. Knowing some of the shortcomings of the old system, I looked at the new ones, and it didn't seem like they were corrected, and they still sell just 2 outlets with them, adding 2 more being optional, and, of course, costly. So I bought the 4 zone Melnor, and liked it so much I got another one! The best thing about it is that each outlet is totally controllable on its own, while the Orbit was not nearly as flexible; understandable, given how old that model was, but when I read the new instruction manual, it did not sound that much better. And the Melnor is incredibly easy to learn to program.
Dave

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11336
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Watering setup question

I don't have enough water pressure to manage a lot of heads much less multiple zones. I do use a faucet timer for one zone only. I had my dad install extra faucets in the yard for me years ago. The original ones are attached to the sides of the house and they were on three sides of the house. All of them would have been in the way if you had to walk around the house. I had the faucets placed along the perimeter walls instead.

I do have an in ground sprinkler system. It has 6 zones and two zones are for the grass. The other 4 zones were connected to my drip system and water the borders and veggie beds.

I do have a faucet with three 'Y' connectors on it. One Y runs the veggie garden sprinklers. Within the three beds there are additional in line turn off valves I can close if I want to work on one section while the others are being watered of if the water pressure drops and cannot run all the sprinklers at one time. This part could be on a timer but it is in my community garden and timers are not allowed. The other part of the same Y is attached to another Y to divide that side for a total of three options . The other Y is attached to a 50 ft hose that I have a multi pattern spot sprinkler attached to but I can also attach a hose end sprayer instead to hand water. The remaining Y is not connected to anything, I use it to wash my tools and hands when I am in the garden.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

Jason L
Cool Member
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2014 5:13 pm
Location: South East Michigan

Re: Watering setup question

Wow I like that melnor timer better. And home depot hascit https://www.homedepot.com/p/Melnor-4-Zon ... 1vZc63jZz8 I assume this is the one you are referring. Now for the watering part of things. I can't setup anything permanent as I won't be in this house long term. And I don't have much money to spend right now. My plan was less than $100 and I already have $25 set to buy chicken wire to make the trellis for the beans. Add the cost of the timer brings that to $65. Once water delivery is settled, I'll need to know how long and how often I need to set it to water. I'm leaning on that sprinkler i linked even if something better could be used, because replacing it with that something better next year means I could use the sprinkler for the lawn. This is assuming the somehing better exceeds my budget for this year. I look forward to input.

pepperhead212
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1580
Joined: Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:52 pm
Location: Woodbury NJ Zone 6B

Re: Watering setup question

Yes, Jason, that is the timer I was referring to. It's gone up $4.00 in just a few months, but HD still has the best price on it.
Dave

Jason L
Cool Member
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2014 5:13 pm
Location: South East Michigan

Re: Watering setup question

Well the timer is working great but the sprinkler is not. It drowns the middle right around the sprinkler and the outer areas maybe get 20% of the total amount of water volume. So it is going to have to be returned and I need a reasonably priced alternative. Problem is I don't know what to look for. When looking online at home depot and lowes they pretty much have nothing. I mean they have stuff listed but it all says can't order. So I need recommendations. I only have $10 left in my original budget but I don't think I'm going to find a better alternative for that amount or less. Unless someone here knows of something I'm not aware of. But I can't continue all season with over watering the middle 25-30% of the garden to water the outer 70% adequately.

At least so far we have gotten enough rain that the lack of well distributed watering hasn't hurt things. Except maybe the few tomato plants where most of the water is going. They are the smallest of all the tomato plants. Though all of the tomato plants aren't as big as I expected. Maybe they need more fertilization. I didn't use the ones I used last year due to feedback I was provided. I do have some water soluble stuff that you add to the water in a watering can to water with. I could do that for the tomato plants. But that's a side note.

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11336
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Watering setup question

Sprinklers do not distribute water evenly that is why you need to move and overlap them when watering a lawn. It also waters up so you lose more to evaporation and water hitting places you don't need it too. Tomatoes should not be overhead watered as much as possible since they are prone to fungal issues.

Is your timer and valves attached to ?
drip system, micro sprinklers, sprinkler hoses, emitters, or netafim?

If you want to make a cheap drip system. Get an old hose. Get a hose cap for the male end. You can get that at home depot. Caps sometimes comes with new hoses. Attach one end of the hose to the faucet. Lay out the hose in the garden. It looks like you planted in more or less straight rows, so lay your hose out in rows close to the plants. If your plants are spaced every two feet, then use a nail and make holes along the length of the pipe next the base of each plant. Do not make the holes too large or all the water will come out from a couple of holes in the beginning and the end will be dry. for the same reason, don't use a really long hose. You can cut and mend hoses so you can attach them to your manifold. You still can only run as many hoses as you have water pressure. Since the hose is not pressure compensating, you need to have enough pressure so you cannot make too many holes or make the holes too big.
A multi zoned watering timer will water one zone at a time
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Melnor-4-Zon ... 5yc1vZc63g
verses a single zone with multiple outlets running at the same time. Needs to have enough pressure to run all at the same time.
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Orbit-Automa ... 5yc1vZc63g

This would cost more but you can use the multizoned timer
Use a pressure reducer for a drip system with 4 zones.

It helps if your faucet is close to the lawn or garden. The longer the run, the more resistance and the lower the pressure gets.

I attach a 1/2 garden hose to one of the faucet manifold outlets and run it out to the garden. Cut any excess hose length you don't need an use a mender hose end. Attach the hose end to drip female faucet connector and then attach to 1/2 inch drip distribution tubing and run that out to the zone in your garden. How big the zone is will depend on your water pressure and how many emitters your zone can support. You can select to use micro sprinklers, emitters, or pressure compensated soakers or hydrotape. It depends on what you need. Put an end cap on the end of the 1/2 in tubing at the end of the zone.

Do the same for each zone.

Caution: emitters are interchangeable but tubing and connectors are not, you need to be committed to one system.

It is best to plan the layout. Calculate your gallons per hour. It will determine the total number of emitters and the sizes your system can accommodate.

If you want the system to be used over again, you have to decide your planting so that successive plantings use the same spacing pattern.

https://www.hunterindustries.com/sites/ ... ok_dom.pdf

For the grass, you do not need a pressure reducer unless you have very high pressure. Attach garden hose to faucet and run it out to the lawn. Attach to faucet connector and main drip distribution tubing. Layout sprinkler system. you want to use a hub and spoke pattern so run the main line down the middle of the lawn and using T connectors run distribution tubing to sprinklers on the perimeter and middle if needed. Tubing should be buried. Use riser T and flex riser at each sprinkler location. attach the proper cap or low pressure sprinkler head. This is a non compensating system so it cannot support a lot of heads. If there are more than three or four you need to add another zone. Each sprinkler should overlap the the next for best coverage.

I had a landscape company install a standard sprinkler system and timer with 6 zones. 2 zones for grass and 4 were connected to my drip system. You can install it yourself but they know how to lay it out and it is a lot of digging. The system is tied in before the house pressure reducer so it has higher pressure and the manifold has valves that I can close to reduce pressure to my drip system to keep it from bursting.

My water pressure has dropped a lot over the years and I had a plumber check it out. It turns out the neighbor's pressure is about the same so he said it is the city pressure that is low and there isn't much I can do to boost my individual pressure unless we can get the board of water supply to boost the main line. As a result my sprinkler no longer reaches. I have changed to low pressure heads and micro drippers to help compensate.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

lexusnexus
Green Thumb
Posts: 358
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 8:06 pm
Location: MD Suburbs of DC, 7a

Re: Watering setup question

Wow. I am a KISS (keep it simple stupid) person and have no desires to complicate things. I have a traditional, in ground 15'X 25' garden so I bought 3-50' sections of dripper hose, and connected them end-to-end. From there I snaked it around the garden. I am using a 1 head Orbit timer. Nature doesn't discriminate on what plants get watered at particular times so I'm not doing that either.
Dan - "Welcome back my friends to the show that never ends..." Emerson, Lake and Palmer - Karnevil #9

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11336
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Watering setup question

I have had my system for over twenty years. The timer has been replaced once and a couple of the valves had to be replaced since I can no longer get parts for the old ones when they leak.

You can run everything on one zone if you have the pressure and are doing mono culture.

I have plants with different watering requirements so I have to zone them. Succulents and most orchids are hand watered. Orchids that need more water are on sprinklers. Vegetable garden is one zone, grass is a separate (2) zones. Border beds are another zone again. They all have different watering times from 5-20 minutes, different types of emitters and heads, and some of them different schedules. It sounds complicated, and if I were to do it in one day, yeah, it might be, but I figured out over time where my plants had to be and group plants according to sun and watering needs and planned each zone that way and built one zone at a time.
Automating saves time, but I still have hand watering to do every day and I still have to check the system for coverage, leaks, clogged emitters or sprinkler heads turned the wrong way. I have to check the soil to make sure it is not over or under watered and make seasonal adjustments to the timer depending on how much rain I am getting. Unfortunately while it is a great boon to have it is not a fix it and forget it thing.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

Jason L
Cool Member
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2014 5:13 pm
Location: South East Michigan

Re: Watering setup question

lexusnexus wrote:Wow. I am a KISS (keep it simple stupid) person and have no desires to complicate things. I have a traditional, in ground 15'X 25' garden so I bought 3-50' sections of dripper hose, and connected them end-to-end. From there I snaked it around the garden. I am using a 1 head Orbit timer. Nature doesn't discriminate on what plants get watered at particular times so I'm not doing that either.
I definitely need to keep it simple as this garden isn't permanent. Probably will be a 3-5 year thing. After which I may very well be moving. So anything I can setup to be reusable after the move would be desired. My garden space is narrower than yours so a similar setup may work for me. The garden is about 50 feet from the faucet which has a 4 zone timer on it, I use a garden hose currently that is long enough to reach the far end of the garden to get the water over there. I only need one of the zones for the garden as everything is 1-2 inch per week of water needed. Would this product be a good one to get? https://www.lowes.com/ProductDisplay?par ... Id=1172841 The garden at my future house will be about the same size as my current one or twice the size if I can work it out. If twice the size then I'd just need to add a second of these kits at that time. If this product is a good choice then I can exchange the sprinkler toward the price of it since it is available from the same place I bought the sprinkler from.

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11336
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Watering setup question

Kits don't work out well unless you follow the plan on the box. You will have parts you don't need and parts you do need will not be included.

If your garden is relatively straight. You can run a garden hose out out to the garden. attach a soaker hose to it. snake it around the garden beds. It can make wide corners but not sharp angles. Turn it upside down so the holes face the ground. It is the simplest and cheapest soaker system. The soaker hose (don't use the one made from tires it clogs too fast) should get enough pressure so the hole in the end still have good water flow. You can bury it or not. Too test for adequate watering, use your finger and feel 2-3 inches down and water until the bed is evenly moist. Test every couple of days and watch the plants for wilting and water again when it is almost dry. I usually leave sprinklers on for 45 min to 1 hour. With good mulch on top, I only have to water every 3 days or so. When tomatoes start producing you may have to water more.

For the grass you need to select a sprinkler with the throw you need. My lawn is small so the round multipattern sprinker works fine I have to move it three times to get adequate coverage. Oscillating sprinklers cover a larger area , but also probably need to be moved. A oscillating or machine gun sprinkler would water my neighbors yard. The kind you need depends on the size of your lawn and the coverage you need. Most sprinklers either need multiple heads or need to be moved to get good overlap because I don't know of any overhead sprinkler that waters evenly.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

Jason L
Cool Member
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2014 5:13 pm
Location: South East Michigan

Re: Watering setup question

I'm so confused. With the layout I have I'd need to snake a hose like thing that is doing water all over the place. If a kit is not practical then I have no idea what I'm doing or getting. All I know is a sprinkle isn't going to work. So I need to return it and get something else. This kit looked like the right track. I had enough tube to make two passes and the heads appeared to be able to water everything near each of them. Assuming I understand how it works. Sorry for my ignorance here in watering systems. But this is really frustrating me. I feel like I'm in a closet full of cookies with no milk to go with them. And I don't know what cookies I can eat.

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11336
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Watering setup question

It helps to do have a plan. If you go to an irrigation store with a measured plan and the plants you plan to put in, the staff can help you lay out and choose the best system and parts you will need. If it is temporary a drip plan can still work.
Get as many details as you can think of on the plan and use graph paper.

You want to know what kind of plants you have, how much water they require, spacing, height (tall plants will block sprinkler heads and some plants like tomatoes you would want to avoid getting the leaves wet if you can.
The store rep will know things like how far each emitter can water and gph of each emitter.
if you have plants with different watering needs you may need to use different zones or types of emitters. For example for short plants in a straight row 6"-1 foot apart like lettuce or spinach I can use pressure compensated drip tubing
For tomatoes I might want to use an adjustible emitter or up to 4 emitters for each plant as they will be spaced wider apart and I don't want to water bare ground, that just encourages weeds.
For grass, I can still use drip distribution tubing on a separate zone with micro sprinklers or standard irrigation heads which will fit on risers.

I helps if you measure the distance to your faucet and you measure your gph. You need to know gallons per hour and water pressure to determine the number and the sizes of emitters you can use on one line.

When you move you can take the system with you, but you can probably only use it for parts.

https://homeguides.sfgate.com/figure-gal ... 76644.html

You need to know your gallons per hour flow rate to determine how many heads or emitters one zone can support.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

Susan W
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1859
Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 6:46 pm
Location: Memphis, TN

Re: Watering setup question

Just throwing in more KISS here. I'm trying to figure a smallish garden within hose reach of the house faucet. Why do you need a watering system?!

If it hasn't rained, water 1 perhaps 2 x week, deep. Not the whole garden in one round. I know most say not to water in the PM, but there are ways around that, trust me. Come home from work, change to outdoor comfy clothes, get something cold to drink and go out with hose in hand. Spot water some vulnerable plants, look over the others. You may look into a water wand (we used in the garden centers). It helps to break the water flow, and can hold down low, not watering leaves (unless you want to. Or go out to garden, leave hose on very low in one area, do some spot weeding near by. Then move hose, etc. There's something to be said for watering and checking each plant as you may catch a weed, a bug, something awesome and more!
Have fun!
Susan

Jason L
Cool Member
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Jun 28, 2014 5:13 pm
Location: South East Michigan

Re: Watering setup question

Basically what I had in mind and what I thought that kit was that I linked was a series of small heads that mist water in an area parallel to the ground so that the water is focused almost downwards. So like 8 give or take heads each watering about 30 sq ft. With it all above ground and tubing allowing interchangeable and flexibility of head placement it would be easy to reconfigure things if needed in the future. So it's kind of like a sprinkler except the water isn't getting shot upwards and no worries of blockage from big plants. And since I grow tomatoes every year I will minimize as much as possible issues from the leaves being wet all the time. Am I going to need to buy parts separately to do that or should I buy that kit or a similar kit to what I linked. The only stores I know of in this area to buy stuff like this is home depot and lowes. Since I have to return the sprinkler to lowes I wanted to simplify things and buy what I needed from them. With this in mind does anyone know what I should buy? I couldn't find anyone at the store that knows anything about the watering products they carry in store and online which only began my frustrations.

pepperhead212
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1580
Joined: Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:52 pm
Location: Woodbury NJ Zone 6B

Re: Watering setup question

I have never used these types of sprinklers, but I have seen them in catalogs of https://www.dripworks.com/ and they give the output, the radius of the watering, and many of them degrees, such as 180°. This way, you could map out the setup, though emitters seem more efficient, and cheaper, as well.
Dave

Return to “Vegetable Gardening Forum”