Had an IRO in my previous home which I left with the new owners. Finally replaced the one which came with my new construction home. So, my 2nd time around. In the new (Calif) home, landscaping is not quite Zeroscape but is a mix of ground cover, bushes, roses and trees and lots of bark covering. I will likely preset specific watering days as we have restrictions to certain days per week and may use some portions of the flex.
I am trying to get good estimates on water used. The entire system uses 1 GPH emitters on everything. The irrigation install follows a standard, ie: 1 emitter each for small ground cover plants and other small plants, 2 emitters for the larger bushes and 4 emitters for the trees. Therefore I was able to estimate # of emitters for the whole landscape at about 270 emitters. I do know your system does not consider the # of heads but works on sq, footage and the output of the head in your water used calculation.
I did create a custom emitter per your formula, which came to 1.6 in/hour. I decided to set the landscape to perennials as it was about in the middle of all of the choices. I left the default of 500 sq. feet in each zone (plus all of the other defaults in the advanced area.) and ran a test. 1 minute in each zone. The dashboard calculated 17 gallons used combined for both zones. Because I know the # of emitters and GPM, I can roughly calculate the water used for 1 minute to be approx 4.5 gallons, quite a disparity versus 17 gallons.
I think inputting the actual sq. footage of landscape area of 2600 sq. ft. will make the computed gallons used much worse, correct?
Wondering if the best approach is to lessen the sq. footage until I roughly meet the # of gallons I have manually calculated? Could I do a rough calculation such as:
4.5 gal is 26.5% of 17 gallons
Therefore 26.5 % of 1000 sq.ft (500 zone 1 and 500 zone 2) would be 265 sq. ft.
Set each zone for 133 sq. ft and run some more tests?
Lastly, what impact does the bark over the entire landscape have on evaporation and other advanced settings. Should I change anything?