A schedule for watering is somewhat a personal decision depending on how much you want to spend on water and whether you are using the system for "survival" of plants and turf or whether you want to keep them at their lushest. The time of the year also affects watering time as the hotter the weather, the more the plants and grass will lose water and the more often you have to replenish it.
Generally speaking, I would apply 1 inch of water per week in hot weather. During spring and fall, you might reduce this to 1/2". Grass is generally best watered less frequently, but longer, in order to insure deep root growth. However, flowers and garden vegetables generally like more frequent watering. Rotary sprinklers will generally apply 1/2 inch of precipitation per hour. Fixed spray heads, on the other hand, will generally apply 1 to 1.5 inches per hour. That is the reason that fixed spray heads should always be valved on zones separate from rotary sprinklers.
Using those numbers, you can select a schedule for days you want to water and the length of watering time. If you don't want to change the watering times on each station as the seasons change, you can use the seasonal adjust feature. The seasonal adjust feature allows you to change the length of watering by a % value for each month.
Generally it is best to water during early morning hours of 3 to 6 am. One other suggestion, if you have hard clay soil or steep slope in some zones, you can allow water to soak in rather than runoff by using the multiple start time feature. If you use this feature, you will divide your total daily watering time by two or three, depending on how many start times you use to avoid runoff.
Please sign in to leave a comment.