Here the simple steps to turning off the Saturation Skip Feature on a Rachio Irrigation Timer and why this feature can be a problem.Read More
Filtering by Category: Irrigation Ideas
October 2018 is here and for irrigation water, it’s the end of the season. Here are the end dates for the different irrigation districts.
Badger Mountain Irrigation District Oct 19th
Benton Irrigation District Oct 12th
City of Pasco Irrigation Water Oct 15th
Columbia Irrigation District Oct 15th
East Columbia Irrigation District Oct 22nd
Kennewick Irrigation District Oct 10th
Quincy-Columbia Basin Irrigation District Oct 24th
Roza Irrigation District Oct 18th
South Columbia Basin Irrigation District Oct 23
What we recommend doing before the water turns off is to make sure all you trees and shrubs get a good drink. Then after the irrigation water shuts off, especially for evergreens is that they get checked for moisture monthly and watered if dry. An easy way to remember is to put a reminder on your phone’s calendar.
Watering for the First Year
In the first growing season, all new plants (including drought resistant ones) need extra water to allow them root into the surrounding soil. Make sure to deep soak the plants enough with a sprinkler on a hose; so that your soil is moist to 12 inches below the surface of the dirt a day after you have watered. You want your moisture to soak in this deep so that your plant’s roots develop deep and can handle not being watered for a few days in case there are problems with your irrigation system. If in doubt, you need to dig down 12 inches with a shovel, trowel or use a soil probe to make sure you are soaking in deep enough.
A general deep soaking schedule for sand loam soil (the main soil texture for Tri-Cities) it is listed by day time high temperatures
50 ̊F or less once a month for evergreens, check every two months for deciduous plants 50 to 70 ̊F deep soak once every two weeks after foliage emerges or drops on deciduous
70 to 85 ̊F deep soak once a week for one hour
85 to 95 ̊F deep soak twice a week for two hours
Above 95 ̊F soak three times a week for two hours
After all wind storms when temperature highs are above 85 ̊F go check the soil moisture.
**For Clay or compacted soil you will need to shorten you water run time and increase the amount of time your water to get the same effect**
Tuning your irrigation system allows for a more efficient use of water and it's easy. It also helps prepare your plants for different weather shifts and you apply water based on that irrigation zones conditions. Both Hunter and Rainbird have free apps to set your run times more appropriately for established yards. Also we have set up links to help determine your yards conditions. Remember that new plantings their first year will need to be babied a bit more but they don't need daily water.
A link to Hunter's App
A link to Rainbird's App
Things to know as you tune your irrigation timer
-The soil type of your yard: Sand, clay, silt or a mix of the three (loam). This will help identify how your yard behaves in drainage and moisture retnetion. Sand has very good drainage and can handle longer run times of sprinklers but needs more frequent runs. Clay soils hold moisture very well however it does not take to long run times well, short bursts work best to prevent run off and water waste. How to tell soil texture by feel.
-The exposure of that sprinkler zone. Full sun, afternoon sun or wind exposed sprinkler zones dry out faster through evaporation than afternoon shade, mostly shade and wind protected zones. Thus as you adjust your sprinkler zone times based on their separate exposures. This can be determined by taking time to walk around the house a couple of times of day and observe what area is sunny and what area is in shade at what time of day and for how long. Do this on a lazy day off.
-Your type of sprinklers. Different sprinkles types throw out water at different rates. Common sprinkler types are rotors, impacts, sprays, bubblers and multi-streamrotors. Also if you have drip, what size of emitters are your using. Irrigation System Component Video can help you identify what type of sprinklers you have.
-The grade of the yard. Is it flat or does it slope up or down? The slope of your yard also affect how sprinklers work as well as how water will travel in the yard. Here is a video to determine slope.
by Alex Job