Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Irrigation Solution

What better time to talk about irrigation than on a rainy morning!  When you have a very large garden getting everything watered is always a challenge.  Some years we have enough rain to only need minimal supplement, other years we have had a drought status and it has been difficult to keep up with the water demands.  We rotate crops each year so a permanent system will not work.  We have tried it all.... from hand watering and drip lines, to an oscillating waterfall sprinkler.  Most of these cause the problem of watering both the beds and paths leading to a constant weeding challenge in the walks.  If I have to spend my time weeding, I certainly do not want to be having to do it on the paths!

Each year we pick one or two major improvements to the farm that are long term investments.  This year it was a watering system and we went with a drip tape format.   We have to run a hose from the house across the drive, but this pressure regulated drip system can be led to all of our beds and sans the initial line, which we will cover in straw, is completely out of the way.  We simply need to turn the valve on for whichever beds we want to water and it takes care of the rest.  The lines are easily movable, so putting them up for the season should not be too difficult, and then once the initial installation is done,  set up should take only a small amount of time in subsequent seasons.  Now that we have spent the time and money, we probably will not need to water at all this summer!

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