I'm fascinated with such phenomena as Hydraulic Lift & Redistribution and Hydraulic Descent when it comes to all forest ecosystems whether Tropical Rainforests, Deserts & Savannas, Temerpate or Boreal Forests, Chaparral Environments and the list goes on. I actually started experimenting with some types of deep pipe irrigation on remote planting sites back in the 1970s when I was in my late teens - early 20s. As time has progressed more and more folks are picking up on this method. The company I wrote about Hunter Industries have created their own version and I like it. But has anyone else developed their own ?
I am a former Landscape Supervisor and head gardener for a property management firm from San Diego CA. I don't like the use of either Chemical Fertilizers or pesticides. I always opted for beneficial bacteria and mycorrhizae which I out collected in the Bush of Southern California. My mum's home has several plantings I established with drip for the first year or two with some plants and that was removed in favour of deep pipe irrigation to get water deep into the soil where it is better stored and utilized by plants whose roots are encouraged to grow deep. Now she never waters the landscape with the exception of a few plants like her roses, but everything else is on it's own for the past 7 years.
I've built my own from scratch and wondered if anyone else has done the same and with what results. - Thanks - Kevin
Barbara Clowers wrote:I let a landscaper install drip watering only to discover the system is meant to be run every day. It's nuts to water trees daily. Been trying to figure out how to deep water trees, especially the new ones he planted. I just ordered deep drip stakes. Pretty much like homemade except I can drive them in the ground without digging around the trees planted last year. Check out dryland farming for more interesting info on growing plants using little water. Turns out tomatoes, grapes and other veggies produce less but have superior flavor when grown this way.
Interestingly depending on your soil, Tomatoes will go down four foot or more for water. In their native habitat the wild relatives grow on flood plains and after the rainy season when all surface soil is bone dry, subsoil moisture will always be available in a flood plan system for months if roots have penetrated properly. In an urban landscape or home gardening situation you have to replicate this and train them to do so. Keeping things on life support, which is always what I consider drip irrigation to be if used to long, will cost more in the long run. I think for landscape, it's fine for a couple of years depending on your soil, climate and just what exactly you have planted and it's needs and requirements. If trees and shrubs are done properly, they will utilize their abilities at Hydraulic Lift and redistribution to take care of the urban ecosystem you've created if done properly as far as community plant groupings. As always, inoculating the ground with proper endo or ecto mycorrhizae and beneficial bacteria is the ONLY way to go. Thereafter mulch evenly and if the biological material and activity in your so is doing it's job properly, you'll find that you may have to mulch 3 or four times a year like I have. You'll also notice and be rewarded seeing where all that broken down carbons have gone into your actual landscape.
But back to Deep Pipe irrigation. There is no better way to apply water than deep into the ground where sun and wind won't evaporate it. Evapo-transpiration is the best way for water's release. The are countless ways of slowing down water loss and allowing it to be used efficiently before heading out back to sea.