Water Conservation Tip No. 15

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If you’re trying to minimize your use of water as you maintain healthy, vigorous plants consider drip irrigation. Whether it’s for patio pots and hanging baskets or plants in beds, drippers saturate the soil in a defined area while other soil nearby remains dry between rain events. Drippers also lose almost no water to evaporation and runoff.

Nurseries and hardware stores sell drip irrigation equipment. It’s also available online. However, it’s a good idea to have an expert help you lay the system out so that each plant’s needs will be precisely met. Buy extra supplies, too, for repairing or amending your system.

Use the term "bubblers" around horticulturists and most will probably think about automatic sprinkler irrigation heads that apply water directly to the soil around trees and shrubs. Like drip emitters, bubbler heads are a good way of applying water without runoff or evaporation.

Veteran gardeners have probably encountered another form of bubbler head. If you’re familiar with water wands and water breakers with the showerhead-like spray pattern, there is a similar head that has much larger holes. It, too, is called a bubbler. It breaks a hard stream of water at full volume into a casual flow. They are also screwed onto the ends of wands for watering large containers.

Posted by Neil Sperry
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