New User and Questions about Multiple Vegetation Types/Lengthy Times

Nope, no drip. Although, I thought about it s few months ago. At the time I hadn’t read much about sprinkler systems and was going to put a drip manifold in place of a spray head on a spray zone. It doesn’t seem like a great idea after the info I’ve received in this thread and other threads in this community.

Best Regards,


I really cannot tell from the picture. Take a hand shovel and wet the soil. Roll the soil in your hand. If it is heavy clay the soil will have a sticky feel and it will have the consistency if play dough.

The soil in this picture is hard and probably more of a mix. When I wet it, most of it crumbles fairly easily. However, the soil in the other zones is definitely more clay if not mostly clay because it sticks to everything and feels like sticky play dough. I want to do the soil test at some point though.

Best Regards,


Interesting feedback on the soaking. I am living around Dallas area and we do have also clay or rather silty clay. I can see that my yard gets typically 5 cycles at 7 minutes. So why would soak time not be a good thing? Should I change my settings?

It is a good thing, but in my case there were so many soaks that it was noon and still watering.

Should I separate my garden zone (zone 5) from the rest of the zones? It’s the only Zone in my yard that doesn’t have grass in it.

Thanks again for all the help. You’ve been tremendous.

Best Regards,


Yes, your garden zone should be on a separate zone because vegetables have a much higher water requirement than turfgrass. I suggest drip irrigation for vegetables. Use annuals as the crop coefficient. Since Rachio does not have a drip configuration, establish a custom sprinkler and name it drip. Use a precipitation rate of 0.2 inch per hour. Use 17mm brown or black drip with inline, pressure compensating emitters. Buy your drip parts from a distributor where contractors but their parts. I do not recommend spray irrigation for vegetables because it can hasten diseases. Mulch your vegetables with hay straw or other mulch to prevent weeds, keep soil temperatures cooler and slow evaporation from the soil.

If you do not want to wire an additional electric valve, you can always rig up a drip system from your hose faucet. You can use a hose timer for irrigation control

Thanks! Correction* should my flower* garden zone (zone 5) be on a separate schedule from the other zones that have flower gardens and grass or all grass?

Good to know about the drip irrigation setup though. Maybe down the road.

Best Regards,


Yes flower garden should be on a separate zone. The ideal method is to zone irrigation according to plant water needs. This is called hydrozoning.

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That depends on the type of flowers growing there. Perennials or annuals? It would be optimal to match the water requirements to the type of vegetation. The flowers you find locally should grow well in your climate and are offered for sale at the optimal season.

If you want, you could have year-round color in your garden. Houston has two growing seasons and during the summer, you want to choose a more drought tolerant / heat-loving flower. Angelonia, and rudbeckia are good choices.

Winter planting could include dianthus, violas, (careful not to over-water them) and marigolds.

Quiz your friend working in Operations at the mall. There’s a reason they remove plants. Many annuals have a short lifespan and to provide year-round color, the right plant needs to be planted at the right time in the right place.

When I worked at a hospital that seemed to be constantly digging up and replacing flowers, I thought it wasteful until it dawned on me that the grounds needed to be colorful all year round.

Gardening in this blast furnace was entirely new to me and I was unfamiliar with the planting seasons here. I took note of what was being planted at what time of year and followed suit.


Thanks for the advice Sunny!

I just got back in town from a week-long family vacation and my Rachio has “rain-skipped” every scheduled watering day since the 8th because of rain in the area. Interestingly enough, my Begonias, Ligustrums, Loropetulum and Texas Sage all look great but my Petunias are in poor shape. As a result, I heeded Robert’s advice and changed the existing watering schedule to exclude Zone 5 (Side Garden) and created a separate interval schedule for just that zone.

I am beginning to see how important it is to plan out what is planted in which area (not that I didn’t believe it**). I had been watering to the needs of the annuals to the point that a number of other plants were affected. I’m not sure what the name of this plant is, but it has very slowly come back since the freeze and it experienced significantly more growth over the past week compared to the last 6 or more months because it was allowed to dry out (or so I infer).

Here are some pictures of the plants in that garden/zone as of 5pm today. The Ligustrums don’t look “great” because I did a large amount of pruning and dead-heading before our trip after reading about how that can encourage new growth. They were crippled due to neglect from the previous owner and then the freeze.

As far as the plants from the mall are concerned, you’re completely right about the growing season (not that I needed to affirm you*) :stuck_out_tongue: but the particular change I had in mind was when they changed massive amount of Petunias from multiple colors to just white in mid-April. Then a month later, they switched all those out to Begonias. I’m not sure why they decided to do this but I’d imagine it was a plan passed down from the corporate office. That said, ill quiz him on it and also talk to the head-gardener. It may be ignorant to think this way but I was also thinking it might be a good idea to plant their Begonias (even though they may stop flowering soon after) in our yard with the anticipation of significant “full” flowering the next season. Feel free to shoot down this notion if it’s flawed. I was thinking more from an economic point of view instead of seeking full color year round.

I’ll definitely check out the flowers you recommended. After seeing how the Petunias impact the rest of the garden, I think they and other Annuals, may not be the best choice for our current watering system.

Any other thoughts would be greatly appreciated!

One last thing I want to throw out there…I wish we could “disable” a watering schedule, so it would be grayed out, without it removing the watering history shown on the calendar. When I inevitably have to change the watering schedule as I learn more and more about watering and my lawn, I’m going to have a long list of old watering schedules that are no longer relevant. I’ll check out the suggestion/idea section of the forum to see if someone else has already brought this up.

Best Regards,