Should You Consider Drip Irrigation for Your Trees?
Ensuring that your trees regularly receive a sufficient amount of water is extremely important for their health and your landscaping. Trees that are under-watered could suffer from dry, curled up leaves, loss of leaves, and a less than perfect canopy.
So, is the answer to watering your trees installing a drip irrigation system? Is it worth it? Let’s talk about why using this type of watering system for your trees and shrubs is a great idea, and how to get started on one for yourself.
Why Using Drip Irrigation for Your Trees is a Great Idea
The number one factor that makes drip irrigation so appealing is that you don’t have to worry about the amount of water being given to your trees – the system is able to ensure they are always hydrated. Yes, it’s a bit of work upfront to get drip irrigation started, but it is well worth the time and money spent.
Here are a few more reasons that this way of watering trees is the way to go.
1. Instead of having to water your trees from above the ground, the drip irrigation system delivers the liquid directly to the roots of your trees. Having this will allow your trees and shrubs to grow a deep root system.
2. Like we said before, your plants will receive the exact amount of water that they need with a system like this. It’s a vast improvement over guessing how much water each tree and shrub needs with a hose or a sprinkler.
3. Watering your trees this way actually reduces waste, as well as helps your utility bills to decrease. Since the water is dripping down to the roots, you have less of it disappearing in runoff or evaporation.
Now that you have seen all the great reasons for having a drip irrigation system, let’s talk about how you can install one for yourself.
How to Install a Drip Irrigation System
If you would prefer to install the drip irrigation system yourself, there are quite a few options for pre-made kits online or at your local garden centers.
Typically these kits will come with a tube that runs from the water supply to the tree, a device to fit the hose to the system, stakes for securing the tube to the ground, and emitters to transport the water from the tube to the tree bed.
To do this yourself, simply lay the tubing around the tree halfway between the edge of the canopy and the trunk. Then, attach the included emitters to the tube and stake them into the dirt. To finish it off, simply connect it all to your faucet and secure the tube.
If you are only using drip irrigation for a few big trees, here are some more specific tips as well.
For regular maintenance, you are going to want to check the system around once a month or so to make sure it isn’t clogged, especially if your water is hard. Also make sure to check regularly that the soil is staying moist – if you have too much or too little rain, the system may need to be adjusted.
If you live in an area with harsh winter weather, make sure to drain out and cover the system in the fall to avoid any freeze damage.
Hiring a Professional For Your Drip Irrigation System
For those of you that are uncomfortable with doing this yourself, consult a trusted local tree care/landscaping professional for assistance. If you are in the San Mateo or San Francisco Bay Area, consider contacting Arborist Now to help you with watering your trees.