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How much water to dump in flower beds?

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by j_nolesfan, Apr 18, 2007.

  1. j_nolesfan

    j_nolesfan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 81

    Hello again and thanks for the advice I've gotten so far. I'm hoping to use my flower beds as a "dumping ground" to a degree to make up for the extra water I need to dispense on my spray head/bubbler zone. Is there a rule of thumb on the GPM per sq ft? One bed's about 8' X 10' and the other is about 10' X 20'. I was planning on having two or three bubblers (Hunter AFB's namely) in the 8' X 10' and five or six in the 10' X 20'. As it stands now, I need to dispense an additional 10-12 GPM. All other heads on this zone will be sprays with a minimum radius of 12' half circle at 1.3 GPM and several 15' quarter circles at 1 GPM. My operating pressure will be above 40 PSI, hopefully under 50 PSI. Specifically, the zone consists of the following sprays.

    2 - 180 degree 12' sprays at about 1.3 GPM
    4 - 90 degree 15' sprays at about 1 GPM
    1 - 240 degree 12' spray at about 1.7 GPM
    2 - 180 degree ~18' sprays at about 1.48 GPM
    Total sprayer flow = 11.26 GPM

    My target flow is a minimum of 19 GPM.
    So, I need to dispense an additional 9-10 GPM in my two beds. I know that bubblers can flow up to 2 GPM but I don't want to flood my beds to the point that I'll need to add Koi, :laugh: One final note, the 10' X 20' bed slopes away from the house a little bit in case that matters.
    Thanks in advance,
  2. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 23,103

    Um, it's the end of the day out here on the coast & I mite have drank a few
    Lawn Genie beers (Canadian version 20%) but IS THIS ALL ON ONE ZONE?
    Or are you running zones in tandem...why do you need to eat 19gpm????
    Am I missing something? Are you a contractor??????
  3. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 50,267

    I think this is a well-water system with a need to match pump output, and the easy way out is to just install as many (standard, so you can replace them) sprays or bubblers as is needed to consume the water supply. No point in asking what a pro would do, since they'd have heavy-flow bubblers, or some other workaround the homeowner might not have access to.
  4. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 23,103

    Lovely..except the precipition rates are screwed up. the application is
    different.....the plants will flood/stress. Other than that, great suggestion!
  5. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 50,267

    Florida sand can soak up a lot of overwatering, so I think the homeowner can go nuts on this. Adjust the controller time, obviously.
  6. j_nolesfan

    j_nolesfan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 81

    Yes, it's a well system and no I'm not a contractor but I have access to anything a contractor could need via an irrigation distributor who carries RainBird and Hunter as well as a few other brands. The problem I can't solve in running in tandem is that I'd have to have the sprays run a shorter time than the rotors AND the 11 GPM would mean that I could only run three or four heads at that time. Then, I'd have to switch from the sprays to another rotor based zone and keep those other three heads still running. So yeah, just dumping the water is a large band aid but it keeps the sore spot in one place instead of two places.
    Another option might be to switch to three spray heads across the width of my side yard in place of where I would have put two rotors. I say this because I don't think (correct me here) that it's a good idea to use sprayers to cover a 20' radius (20' between my house and the fence). If I switched to three across, I could use three sprays at about 7' each for a more efficient (?) coverage?

    Yeah Mike, I'm an idiot when it comes to irrigation but I'm just looking for answers, not for someone to rub it in my face. So kindly have another "Canadian Lawn Genie" :drinkup: and move on to the next thread if you wanna talk down to me.

  7. j_nolesfan

    j_nolesfan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 81

    Wet Boots,
    I'm in Florida but Pensacola might as well be in Alabama. I've got potter's clay in my yard so yeah, if I want to just dump too much water in my level bed, I'd probably need to dig out some of the current soil and drop in some sand. That's why I laid my problem out to the extent that I did, so maybe I could get some opinions on what's too much water in a bed and maybe food for thought on what might make more sense. Would it be a good idea to try and bridge a 20' gap with a spray head? I get the impression that there would be a lot of evaporation in such a large radius of spray as opposed to a curtain stream from a rotor.
  8. gusbuster

    gusbuster LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,926

    Forget gpm for a moment, What kind of plants are going to be in the plant bed? Are the plants tolerant from being watered(sprayed) from above or are the plants such as roses that only like to be water at the bottom.

    Before trying to figure out your g.p.m. problem, it would help to know what kind of plants you'll be using.
  9. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 23,103

    The point I was trying to make was plant/zone is the bottom line: gpm is
    b.s , so is psi...making the plants happy I thought was our gig. Moisture
    meters should be part of everybody's field kit. Roses are a problem w/spray,
    6" pops work well...where the roses are planted affects their health.
  10. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,496

    How about hydrilla? After all... he WILL end up with a swamp in those beds. May as well join other parts of Florida that are already clogged up with this ungodly water weed.:laugh:

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