1/4" or 1/2" drip irragation for fruit trees on a new zone?

I am adding a new zone this week that will focus on my 2-apple, 2-orange, 2-lemon, 2-lime and 2-avocado trees in our small backyard. I am thinking I would do this with 1/2" drip main line with 1/4" spot watering emitters. I imagine this is a very basic question but would this be the best way to focus on these fruit trees. I am having a hard time getting consistent water coverage through the sprinklers.

This weekend I am replacing the Orbit sprinklers / brass heads with new Hunter PRS30 sprinklers / HE-VAN-08 nozzles. I decided it’s a good time to add a new zone on a drip that gets enough water to my fruit trees. I noticed the shrubs are getting bigger now and covering the sprinkler so my Holiday Avocado is not getting enough water and starting to dry out. Rather than watering that zone longer I would rather have a new zone that focuses on these fruit trees. Am I thinking about this right?

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Sprinklers are meant for turf/landscape, not trees. You figured that out.

Good idea on the drip zone for the trees. You are thinking right. You’re also thinking right on 1/2" main lateral with 1/4" spot watering, what I call point source watering.

Good work!

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Install drip irrigation. Build a tree ring around the trees with Netafim or Rain Bird drip tubing. Install the Netafim USA app on your phone. You can run blank 17mm (standard size, laymen see it as 1/2").

Here is a link to the Netafim drip design guide. I would https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=http://www.netafimusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/LTLCVDG-Techline-CV-Design-Guide.pdf&ved=0ahUKEwjnyJmAzOnXAhVB64MKHSUHCQAQFghNMAE&usg=AOvVaw2Nq9Mo9NnsEeioOgPpj5MX mess around with 1/4inch microtubing.

Tree ring: https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=http://www.netafimusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/EZ132.pdf&ved=0ahUKEwiI8dfDzOnXAhWQ3oMKHSDmBSoQFghQMAA&usg=AOvVaw3xgr4KmwwigVXYBLhnv3iX


I think you’re on the right track here :slight_smile: :rachio:

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Today I was told I will need to add another one of these ‘water regulators’ (I am pretty sure that’s not the correct name) to be able to manage the new zone. I guess I was not really sure how to manage a new zone and just wanted to make sure this is the right advice?

I called around to find someone with the Netafim in stock but none had it and told me that the minimum cost would be too high for them. They suggested that I made one myself and save the money? I love the idea of watering around the tree robertokc and I am definitely going to take your advice. This new zone brought up my cost considerably but I want to do it right.

Last question, I have always been taught to water my plants in the morning. Does anyone also water at night (too)?

If you have drip you are OK to water at night, but with overhead sprinklers every expert recommends watering only during the early morning hours. Wind speeds are lowest in the morning. If water sits on the leaf blade of grass and plants it is a breeding ground for disease.

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Netafim is the market leader, but Rain Bird has the same stuff, too. Were you calling wholesale irrigation distributors that sell to contractors? Where do you live? Plug in your zip code belowThe key is to buy 17mm tubing, 17mm barbed fittings, etc.
Find a Netafim distributor: https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=http://www.netafimusa.com/landscape/locator/&ved=0ahUKEwjcz8-_wuvXAhXGxlQKHReIBr8QFgg-MAA&usg=AOvVaw2bDa5W_XnwTfs1OpI9OAMJ

I called the top 5 Netafim distributors from their website and none had them in stocks or could give me a quote. They all said they would call back but I never received a call back. I don’t give up easily and will make sure I get what I want and I want the two ring product in a Netafim. I makes way too much sense to get the water exactly where it needs to go.

These are anti siphon valves. https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=http://www.sprinklerwarehouse.com/articles.asp%3Fid%3D188&ved=0ahUKEwiV5KThxOvXAhVhxVQKHY4jDQ4QFggxMAI&usg=AOvVaw0fIM4CIFVJJlp1e9Z0PcbL

I can’t imagine how California would still allow these. They provide inadequate protection from contaminants from the landscape entering the drinking water in your house. Plus, the look tacky. The option is to replace all of these with standard electric valves in valve boxes and Install a pressure vacuum breaker to provide backflow protection on the entire irrigation system. I am beginning to question the contractor who installed your sprinkler system.

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Wow. Ok here is the link to the Rain Bird catalog with equivalent parts. Where do you live? I would think they would be smart enough to tell you what they carry. Netafim dominates the California



What city do you live in?

This is a very informative conversation. Thank you to those contributing.

Best regards,


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I live in Irvine (92618) and Ewing Irrigation is the company that has not got back with me now two separate times.

I had a horrible contractor looking back who went on the cheap for everything and it’s sad I need to upgrade only 2-years after the install. Funny thing is he is the same contractor who did many of the homes on flip or flop with Christina and Tarek. All of their homes were in the Orange County area.

Ewing IS a big Netafim distributor. They typically won’t bother with homeowners… Call them on Monday. Better yet go to the store. Not all distributors sell to homeowners because they see them as a pest.

Just go to the store.
I found others listed as distributors in your area.
Horizon, Site one, imperial, smith.
One of these surely sell to homeowners. You can always purchase parts online.

Am I understanding that there are 10 trees? I have 6 (3 apples, a plum, and 2 cherry) in two rows in an area that is approximately 60’ ft in length by 30’ wide. In another location, there are two well-established citrus that were supposed to be dwarf, but have grown to almost standard size.

I use a drip that has emitters spaced according to the needs of each tree. A less established tree may require more water than an older, well-established tree.

A common problem among home gardeners is over-watering. Citrus perform best with deep less frequent watering, while most varieties of avocado have a shallow root system and may dry out more quickly.

The challenge will be to ensure proper watering for each tree. There is no “one size fits all” when there are so many variables.

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I agree sunny and that will be my challenge when setting up this new zone.

Zone 1: Raised garden on a drip system: 12 mins every 4-days
Zone 2: Sprinkler system for bushes, flowers and smaller plants: 9 mins every 4-days
Zone 3: Adding this zone to properly water 10 fruit trees: not sure yet?

The fruits trees were added to hide the cinder block and to grow as an espalier. We ran poles deep into the ground and added concrete then did our own wiring at three different levels to train and teach each of the plants to cover the wall in width but we will be limiting the height through pruning the trees so they do not grow to their full potential.

We put each of these trees in at the same time and the trees on the sunny side of the backyard have grown very quickly while the other side is really growing much slower and easily at half the rate of growth. This is all very new to us and we have a neighbor who is a master gardener who specializes in avocados helping us and showing us the way. He can help us understand the amount of water for the avocado trees (Haas and Holiday for year round avocados) and I will need to see how well that watering schedule would work for the lemon, lime, apple and orange trees or I may need to add another zone (hoping not).

I feel like a newborn here and not afraid to share or show how little I know as I learn from all of you. Thank you for your patience and your help.

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I wondered if some of the trees had been espaliered. Awesome way to cover a wall and you still get the advantage of the fruits!

You’re fortunate to have a master gardener neighbor who is knowledgeable about avocados. Have to admit, I’m a bit envious that you are in a good climate to grow them. And year 'round harvest, too.

My fruit trees are planted “orchard-style” as a separator between neighbors and because there’s plenty of room. We put in a 25’ foot row of blackberries on the opposite side of the yard. Just waiting for a big enough harvest for pies.:yum:

I’m a firm believer that a garden can be beautiful and produce food at the same time. The apples and cherries are so gorgeous when they are in bloom in the spring.

This year, we canned pasta sauce, 2 kinds of salsa and have enough potatoes to last quite a while. I love being able to go into the garden and pick fresh greens for a salad.

LOVE blackberries, cherries and apples! What kind of apple trees did you go with, I was hoping to get my hands on the Cosmic Crisp but the climate was not right nor do I think you can find them anywhere. We ended up deciding on Sundowner since I am a huge fan of the Pink Lady and wanted something that would grow well in our climate. We grew up with an apple orchard on my grandparents land so the decision to go with an apple was easy.

We grow and eat all of our own salad too, I love cutting it, crisping it and eating it within hours. I wish w had the room to grow rows of trees planted orchard style. We had blackberries growing wild and I can still taste the pies grandma would make (she was a professional baker). She would always say, you pick them and I will cook them.