Maintain garden flowers and shrubs in a garden or a green lawn by daily waterings is now easy thanks to automated watering systems. Simply choose the irrigation system that best suits the area’s size, configuration, and plant species to be watered. However, to be effective and operational, the selected system must be the resulting choice from a preliminary feasibility study.

An automated watering system can certainly make life easier but its installation is much more difficult. Regardless of the chosen watering system, it requires the installation of a well-defined irrigation network to cover the entire area containing the plants to be watered. Some automatic sprinkler systems are easier to implement than others, but to minimize installation costs and avoid unnecessary expenses, you should turn to sprinkler specialists. One must be careful in seeking help from a layman or a simple plumber because the automated sprinklers are composed of specific elements that are difficult to handle.

The different types of automated watering systems

The most commonly used types of irrigation are drip irrigation and sprinkler irrigation. Drip irrigation involves placing drippers at the base of plants, flowers or shrubs to moisten their roots. This type of watering allows for uniform spot irrigation. The low but steady water flow rate make it a very economical but effective method. It is mainly used for small areas because its installation requires connections to a number of drippers. Sometimes, instead of drippers, porous pipes of limited length are installed at the base of plants. The sprinkler sprays water in the form of light rain or mist on the plants to be watered. Sprinkling works well for rather fragile flowers and plants and is suitable for flower beds of large dimensions. This type of automated, large-scale watering system often consists of pierced pipes and is mainly used to cover a large area with uniform and regular watering, such as your lawn for example. The only possible disadvantage of sprinkling is that it wets the plants foliage, which could encourage the growth of fungi in certain plants. In any case, specialized vendors can provide stationary, revolving, pulsating, oscillating, in-ground and traveling sprinkler systems. Finally, we can mention trickle irrigation which is made up of small ground networks. It is used for supplying water to vegetable gardens and field crops.

System and installation costs

A distinction can already be made in regard to the installation of the primary irrigation network. There are two types of automated sprinkler systems; the surface network and the underground network. Surface network automated sprinkler systems include drip irrigation systems of which the pipes are not concealed and thus apparent. Underground irrigation systems are intended to cover large areas, as is the case for watering a lawn. The installation of a sprinkler system therefore requires an underground network. Installing both of these systems requires the use of plastic pipes, fittings and pipe supports. The only difference between them concerns the size of the installation. They include a built-in timer. As such, if they are connected to a pump or screwed to a water tap, this device enables the watering’s automatic start or stop. They also include other elements such as pressure reducing valves, flow regulators and shut-off valves. You should therefore seek advice from specialized vendors to obtain specific information. First, inquire about the operation of a sprinkler system and, secondly, about the product’s quality and the installation costs of the chosen system. But first and foremost, you should consult specialists who will establish an accurate price quote of the required materials and estimated work to do until the full installation is completed. These specialists can give you advise on your choices and suggest a combination of two systems, drip irrigation systems and sprinkler irrigation systems, in order to cut down on you expenses.

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Published in Garden maintenance by Alexander on 06 Jul 2011