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Thread: watering potted plants

  1. #1

    watering potted plants

    Hi all, This is my first post but-----------------
    I have been reading this site for months and have learned lots.
    Thanks!!!!
    I have approximately 300 1 gallon plants that need watering in summer. What methods do you use? In the past I have watered by hand, except for the intermittent mist system for cuttings.
    I am considering drip irrigation with micro sprinklers or drippers. What do you think? Would the misters (dramm)of the type used for cuttings do the job if left on longer, say 5 minutes every 1-3 days dependent upon daily temperature?
    My plants vary (needle evergreens, hollies, boxwoods,spireas,
    dogwood,rhododendron,azaleas,weigelia,etc.)
    Looking for a system to reduce labor time, but adequately water--on a timer type, automatic program.
    Thanks for any info-----I love this site for all its knowledge and nice people!
    John

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Kirbyville,Texas
    Posts
    156
    John I use just a regular lawn sprinkle that goes back and forth it has several settings on it . I got it hooked up to a cheap manual timer I turn it on the morning when they need water and it'll shut off on its own. I know of one grower that swears by the drip system It saves him water and the fertilizer don't leach out. But cost is another thing.
    As far as the mister heads you might want to go with different heads that put out more water. Check out www.mortonproducts.com you'll kind get an ideal on there heads.As far as in the greenhouse I water all by hand I would love to have a overhead water system with sprinkler heads for the days I'm running behind. If you have a large selection of plants I think your best bet would be hand watering
    Gene

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Zone 9a - Gulf Coast
    Posts
    9,934
    John,

    I use two of the model 3060 similar to the Melnor in the follow link for my potted plants. During the drought last spring, I set one to go off on one day, and the other to go off the following day. Ie., they were both set to run for an hour every other day. Even though my well pump is strong, I had to make them on separate days because the builder used PVC that was too small, so only so much can go through it at once or the pressure will get too low.

    It was also convenient just to set them on manual when the drought ended. That way, all I had to do was turn them on for an hour, and I didn't have to make sure I was around to remember to shut them off.

    I also have the model 3015 that I use in the front bed. It is not as expensive, but worked just fine for me. I had it attached to something similar to a soaker hose.

    These were available at Home Depot last spring.

    Here is the link:

    http://www.melnor.com/search.cfm?CATEGORY=Timers

    I hope that helps...
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Kirbyville,Texas
    Posts
    156
    Ann
    Was wondering about the life of the batterys on your timers and if they have a low battery light. I had a timer that took a 9 volt battery.I went on a trip for 5 days to return losing several plants because the battery was dead. Talk about mad.it was my own fault tho.Don't have to worry about replacing the batterys now it's broke now. I went to a cheap manaul one so I have to look at the plants to be sure nothing eating on them or red ants are building in the pots.
    Although I would like to get another one and hook up one of those electronic pans (Catches rain water has a sensor) don't know what there called but won't let your water timer come on if you got an inch or two of rain that day. I feel like you could hook several timers to it and save water usage,electrical, and especially fertilizer from leaching out more.I like the ideal Home Depot handles them. Need to check them out this summer.
    Gene

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    443

    i am looking at drip

    hi john.
    i am looking at drip irrigation also.
    the water conservation of it is appealing to me.
    i know that all of the greenhouse operaters use it to water their hanging baskets !
    when i get more container shrubs set up i do believe it will be a good option for me.
    useing overhead wtareing for me is a waste of water.but fast to get the job done and a mess when its done. if you learn more about drip please post it here. teach me . i can use the help.
    my field planted stock needs water also. i use a rosette type head
    but may switch to drip tape for them. i dont have to water them much because they are mulched very well. let us know what you know . thanks shepp

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Zone 9a - Gulf Coast
    Posts
    9,934
    Gene,

    I have had these timers for 10 months. They are all still using the original batteries, and the batteries are currently operational. I need to check the batteries soon, though.

    Obviously, I have these timers disconnected at the moment due to the hard freezes that we are having ocassionally. I had to remove them anyway to put the covers over the outside faucets to keep them from freezing.

    I have a battery checker that I believe came from Radio Shack. It was not expensive at the time, but with an 8 year boy who has lots of battery operated toys, it is worth its weight in gold.

    It has an analog display, and the lable says 'Micronta' Cat. no 22-096A. I know that I have had this device for at least 10 years. It checks D, C, AA, AAA, N and 9-Volt batteries, and the readout is extremely reliable.

    It says it checks zinc-carbon (standard), alkaline, mercury and nickel-cadmium (when charged) batteries. You could probably make one, but I don't think these are very expensive...

    Also, I might add that I use a filter on each one of these timers. I have well water...
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  7. #7
    Thanks Ann, Gene and Shepp,

    I will be looking into this further and will take into account all that you have related. Shepp---I will let you know here on the boards what I find out further about drip irrigation.
    Again thanks all--- for being a friendly and knowledgable group.
    John

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