Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Drip by Drip

With completion only a few short weeks away, we’ve now started to install the drip irrigation which will be used in areas where plants don’t have access to the graywater pipes- We are using a mix of desert plants and drought tolerant Mediterranean species to reduce the water demand by landscaping. However, since the graywater pipes are only on the downhill side of the house (and we have landscaping on all 4 sides) we need to provide for additional irrigation. We decided to go with a low flow drip system- Home Depot has a good variety, but one should read about the subject before starting to install. First of all, drip irrigation works at a lower water pressure, so a pressure reducer needs to be put in place. Secondly, a filter needs to be installed as well to avoid the small emitters from getting clogged (emitters are rated in gallons per hour, rather than gallons per minute, as common for regular sprinklers). Care should be taken in laying out the risers (the visible portion of the pipes to which the drip lines will hook up. You have to make sure that you can reach all the plants that will go in after and also avoid having the unsightly black drip pipes in clear sight.
We expect to get our plants this coming weekend and -weather permitting- hope to put the first ones in the ground as well.

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