View Full Version : Need irrigation idea for trees on the fringe

08-21-2006, 10:43 PM
We live on five acres and have about one acre of nice lawn. My wife wants to surround that one acre with trees to hide all of the weeds and to make a defined edge to our lawn. My plan is to plant pines around the lawn since they seem to grow well here. Anyway, I am wondering the best way to irrigate these trees. It is not practical to run a dedicated drip line out to them so that is not an option. We have an in-ground sprinkler system for our lawn consisting exclusively of Hunter I-20 heads so I could just try to use that to irrigate the trees but I am concerned about getting complete coverage of the roots and also that only the trees closest to the sprinkler heads would get water. Another option would be to T-off from the irrigation supply line for the outer zones and install a drip system. That would not provide independant control of the irrigation for the trees as they would only get watered when the grass gets watered but I could adjust the volume by using different emmiters. I know that is not an ideal solution but under the circumstances I don't know what else to do other than manually water them which ain't gonna happen. Any other suggestions or input.

Also, what distance should I keep between the trees and the irrigation lines in order to minimize the roots invading and damaging the irrigation system?



08-21-2006, 11:47 PM
I tell you what I see at our commericial sites. They have a valve dedicated to tree watering. Then they run a line to each tree and have a emitter that puts out a fair amount of water. We put some 8ft. dia. nozzles on some of them to get better distribution of the water across the entire root zone.

Dirty Water
08-22-2006, 01:05 AM
Optimally, a drip system on its zone would be ideal.

In worst case, a drip system tied into the I-20 zone would work, assuming your running your I-20's daily for aroudn 45 minutes, that should be adequate time for drip zone to work (I'd use two 4 gph emitters for each tree), but your climate may be drier than my area of WA.

08-22-2006, 11:17 AM
Thanks for the replies. We basically run our sprinklers 90 minutes three days a week during the height of summer. During the shoulder seasons we scale back to twice a week and then in spring and fall we only go once a week. I think in summer the trees would get watered enough but in spring and fall and maybe early and late summer they would be lacking, especially when they are new. I could change our irrigation cycle to water every day but for less time, however, I was told and found through trial and error that less frequent watering was the way to go. I wish I could dedicate a drip line to the trees but all eight of our zones are being used and I don't really have time right now to add another zone or two. Maybe it's going to come down to hand watering for a year or two until I can find a better solution. Just out of curiosity though, how far can a drip line be run before you start to lose too much pressure? The perimeter of our lawn is about 1000' and I am ultimately thinking we'll put in somewhere between 50-100 trees so I assume I would need several drip zones to cover a run like that. Thanks again for the help.


08-22-2006, 08:12 PM
Go to the water source at one of the valves closest to the trees and put in a hose tap and hook a battery timer on it and run the soaker hose off of that bib.