Designing Your System
Congratulations - you are making an important long-term investment in your property!
The vigor and health of the landscape will be greatly enhanced by installing an Aquarius Irrigation System. Commercial and Municipal property will be more attractive and impart a message of success. This laborsaving addition will also enable you to maintain a quality landscape with minimal effort - leaving more time for recreation or maintenance of other facets of the property.
A proposal provided by Aquarius is based on irrigation systems developed from our extensive irrigation and horticultural experience and the knowledge of the interrelationships between horticultural design and irrigation needs.
Irrigation systems may be designed according to reduced budgets where everything is irrigated as though it were raining (Surround and Drown) or the irrigation system may be designed to provide ecologically effective watering for different areas (Hydrozone). Unfortunately irrigation systems designed as the “Surround and Drown” method drenches mulched garden plants or leads mildew, root rot, excessive “water-sprout” growth or other watering-related diseases. These systems also spray across sidewalks and driveways creating potential hazards while wasting water or water sunny and shady areas at the same time.
We design irrigation systems that try to avoid spraying across public walks, driveways and roads and attempt to separate lawn areas and gardens to enable the property manager or homeowner to selectively irrigate plants with special needs.
Often these strategies require a few additional sprinklers or a separate drip zone - resulting in more zones and higher prices. Our extensive experience indicates that it is easier and less expensive in the long run to initially design the irrigation system properly than to attempt modifications in the future. You will experience less lawn and shrub disease, more compact and controlled shrub growth and a uniformly green lawn.
Should future modifications such as additions or changes to the landscaping be made, we retain irrigation installation plans in our files to avoid destruction of the irrigation system where possible. The extensive files that we maintain ensure that your irrigation system is well documented now and into the future.
Irrigation systems are separated into hydrological zones.
Very few irrigation systems have the capacity to irrigate the entire property at once; most are divided into “zones” that often have 3-8 sprinklers operating at one time. Your property has been divided into geographic or horticultural regions and the irrigation system has been priced accordingly.
Since adjacent irrigation zones often overlap each other, sprinkler coverage from these areas may irrigate small areas that you decide not to select. Nevertheless your proposal has been prepared to allow for either the complete installation, or a phased-in installation while maintaining the optimum irrigation coverage as described above.
“It is better to do it right the first time than to attempt patchwork fixes in the future”
Although it is cheaper and easier to install an irrigation system that just “makes it rain” philosophy, this will eventually lead to conflicts in watering schedules. Such problems as excessive watering in some areas or insufficient watering in other areas will develop quickly.
Lawn areas have very different water regimes than mulched perennial beds. Lawns have an enormous thirst for water by direct evaporation from the soil and the grass blades. Shrubs and perennials have a mulched surface - reducing direct evaporation. Shrubs also have a smaller total leaf area than lawns resulting in less frequent water requirements. Exposed sunny and windy sites have greater direct evaporation than shady or protected sites and should be irrigated separately.
Such areas as rose gardens, perennial gardens surrounding buildings or selected well-defined perennial planting beds are ideally suited to drip irrigation. Gardens where annuals are planted or small isolated gardens in large lawn areas are often better irrigated with sprinklers to avoid cutting drip pipes when planting annuals.
Occasionally it is cost effective to irrigate both garden and lawn areas at the same time such as in shady locations. Selective location of sprinklers and modifying nozzle sizes can sometimes over- come the damaging effects of over and under watering a diverse landscape. For these and other reasons we try to separate lawns and gardens into different irrigation zones.