Drip Line vs Drip Tape in perennial beds

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by EcologicalLivingSystems, May 8, 2008.

  1. EcologicalLivingSystems

    EcologicalLivingSystems LawnSite Member
    Posts: 1

    So I'm new to this forum but have been extremely impressed with the wealth of information! I have a question and I'm wondering if you all might offer your thoughts. I'm way up here in MN and I'm going to be doing a lot of work with a landscape designer here who is doing lots of environmentally sustainable type stuff. She really minimizes turf area and creates lots of perennial planting beds, lots of natives, shrubs, trees, etc. Some of the areas are really only needing establishment irrigation for the first year or three. Drip line seems the best way to go to get efficient use of water (as per the environmental concerns of the customers, etc). So far the installer she's worked with have done dismal jobs, just snaking it through the planted bed getting one emitter sorta near each plant. This obviously isn't healthy for the plants, isn't getting enough water, etc. I'll be making sure to properly asses the sites, lay the grid of laterals out with correct spacing and thereby get total coverage. The problem is that with such large sq ft of beds to cover it starts getting into the several thousand feet of drip line category, and that's expensive. I've noticed that Drip Tape, especially sold for agricultural purposes, is considerably less expensive. If cost is a factor here, what are the reasons for not going with the drip tape? Any insights would be most appreciated, thanks!
  2. greenmonster304

    greenmonster304 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,101

    drip tape is thin walled and only designed to be installed for one gowing season and then it is thrown out. if you but it in a planting bed that is weeded and tended often you will be fixing leaks once a day.
  3. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,984

    And all we need is more crap at the landfill. I'm thinking Rain Towers with
    Stream Rotors to blanket the area.
  4. lowvolumejeff

    lowvolumejeff LawnSite Member
    Posts: 72

    Ditto on the tape. Suggest you try adding 1/4 inch laterals with individual emitters into the drip line where you need supplemental or directed water. Can be "goof" plugged after the plants are established. Best of both Worlds. Jeff
  5. AI Inc

    AI Inc LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 25,393

    On larger plantings you can always double loop them with reg drip.
  6. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,308

    Ditto. Drip tape is not intended to be used for permanent installs.

    I might also add I would hesitate to use drip for "full coverage" applications and if it is not buried, it is only marginally better (if mulched) than the much loved shrubbler.
  7. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,984

    Don't forget backflow protection.
  8. CAPT Stream Rotar

    CAPT Stream Rotar LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,911

    This company I interviewed with this past Friday said they did a whole field in drip.
    An entire turf field!I told them that makes me want to cry! I told them they are crazy...

    Drip rulz.
    Drip tape=temporary
  9. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,984

    Did you get the job? :rolleyes:
  10. CAPT Stream Rotar

    CAPT Stream Rotar LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,911

    not formally, but I know I landed it...

    I interviewed as a tech position..
    i knew:
    proper troubleshoot
    knowledge of computer programs
    how to trace wires
    how to deal with nut jobs

    They asked me if its alright if I can go to school for a cic/clia..
    they pay for everything...I almost fell over...

    ill get an email Monday finding out the wage for a year, which is very handsome..They have 4 install crews and work on a ton of Government contracts from air fields, navy bases, and I think the IwoGima (sp) memorial.

    This place is totally where I want to take my career.

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