The Value of Proper Irrigation Design (For Your Pocketbook and the Planet)

March 7, 2022 9:51 pm  | Published by

When we talk about landscape architecture, one of the most important factors to consider is irrigation. Why? Well, plants need water! And while they do get this naturally from rainfall, a proper irrigation design will make the most of that rainfall and other sources of hydration. That can save you money, improve the conditions of the environment, keep people in the landscape safe, and help the planet. It’s no small list! So, let’s discuss the value of proper irrigation design in a little more detail.  

Irrigation Keeps Plants Healthy (And Looking Like It)

Min An healthy plants because of proper irrigation design

This is probably the most obvious benefit of proper irrigation design, but it is inarguably key! What is the point of pouring time and money into a landscape design that ends up looking wilted or brown? If you don’t invest in a proper irrigation design (via Certified Irrigation Designers; more on that here), this could happen! 

The volume of rainfall your landscape experiences can vary based on a plethora of elements. For example, if you have a large amount of tree cover, the plants and grasses below might get less water. But when you have an irrigation system that enables you to direct more water to them, this problem dissipates. 

In short, keeping things green is a value of proper irrigation design! 

Landscape Irrigation Design Saves You Money

Lisa Fotios hydrated plants because of proper irrigation design

While you might have to spend a little more upfront for a Certified Irrigation Designer, it is worth it in the long run. Use their expertise and specialized knowledge of hydraulics, pumps, soil-water-plant relationships, precipitation and application rates, etc. You’ll find that once that highly informed irrigation design is in place, you need to use less water. Sometimes a lot less. 

And that isn’t the only way that proper irrigation design saves you money. Consider the reduced maintenance! When plants aren’t being properly watered, the resulting damage could mean that you have to replace them far more often than should be necessary. It could also lead to more demand for pruning, reshaping, etc.  

A great irrigation system helps your landscape operate organically and utilize natural water sources to the fullest. The resulting environment is healthy, eco-friendly, and easy to manage. 

Say Goodbye to Weeds and Fungi

In addition to the above benefits, a proper irrigation design reduces maintenance because it can target watering to the roots of trees and plants. This prevents overwatering that could lead to an excess of weeds and fungi. And that means less maintenance! 

The Planet Will Thank You, Too

Greg Galas proper irrigation design for the planet

Speaking of eco-friendly, proper irrigation design is valuable because it is a boon to the earth, too.  

A landscape that is well-hydrated, but not overwatered, is a healthy one! And the benefits of a healthy green space to the larger environment are immense. When grasses and plants are healthy, they can take in pollutants, like sulphur and carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, and turn them into oxygen. If a landscape is parched, this process can’t work to its best capacity. 

Proper Irrigation System Design Mitigates the Impacts of Dangerous Flooding

landscapes with irrigation mitigate flooding Karolina Grabowska

When a landscape is overwatered or doesn’t have the system in place to handle an excess of rainwater, flooding can result. This can be a major problem, especially in commercial and public green spaces. The plant life will suffer, which leads to replacing and restoring at great monetary cost. But that’s not even the most imperative reason to avoid flooding.

The bigger issue is that it can pose a danger to those meant to enjoy the green space. Depending on the severity of the flooding, small dogs or children could drown. But even if there are only large puddles, harmful bacteria can pool there and dangerous wildlife like cottonmouth snakes could remain hidden before attacking passersby. 

University of Missouri has an entire article titled Controlling Snakes After a Storm or Flood. It’s a good one, but the best way to prevent this danger is to avoid flooding in the first place!  

So, what is the value of proper irrigation design? Well, it …

  • Keeps plants healthy
  • Saves you money
  • Benefits the environment
  • Prevents dangerous flooding

To learn more about Jerry Pate Design’s approach to proper irrigation design, email us at sdana@jerrypatedesign.com.  

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This post was written by Steve Dana

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