Irrigation Options
Dripperlines for New Plants
Garden Tip
TB1114
Technical Bulletin Series
Providing superior water distribution for newly planted shrubs and trees is essential for expecting to have successful installation.
New plants initially have very limited root systems. Only those roots within the Nursery Pot exist and often many of these are traumatized during transplant. It is critical that the new little root system be placed into a significantly larger hole filled with good moist soil.
Here we can see that 4 emitters were installed to irrigate this new plant. The original rootball and the surrounding soil in the hole is receiving moisture. Because of this the roots have emerged from the initial rootball and growth is occurring. Watering needs to have a run time long enough to allow the moisture to penetrate to the bottom of the root zone.
Here a young plant has been installed and the dripperline irrigation spirals from the center outwards providing consistent moisture to both the existing root system and the area outside this yet within the planting hole.
To simply install a single shrubbler (like this) for a plant is asking for trouble.
If the moisture happens to be sufficient for this plant initially, it rarely is wide enough for the plant after a couple years of growth.
Whether your choice is the use of spray shrubblers or dripperline, keeping to the principle of distributing the water throughout the Rootzone area is essential for the current and future health of the plant.

Here is an example of helping to create better water distribution
by adding emitter locations. This can be done with many different type emitters.
The "Garden Calculator Pro I" provides recommendations for installing a specific number of emitters and then running the system for a specified time in order to achieve the calculated water volume needed to adequately irrigate the soil surrounding the plant in question. As water expense is usually an concern, the Calculator also provides an estimate of the annual cost of watering the plant according to these specifications. You will find how low this cost really is.
Using 6 inch spacing dripperline

A section of dripperline with 6 inch spacing running for 10 feet costs approximately $1.80. As is seen this represents a very economical method for providing uniform moisture distribution around a new plant.