Setting up new landscaping question

We have redone our backyard and our irrigation and added a Rachio 3. I’m finding out how many things I didn’t know about irrigation right now!

The landscaper has hopefully set up the different types of plants properly on different zones.

  • Grass on its own zone
  • Some 24 gallon trees, 5 gallon shrubs, and 1 gallon ground cover mixed together in the same zones. Most of these are of the same WUCOLS type

I’m think I’m doing all of the work to get the Flex Daily schedule calibrated.

Making sure I get the soil type right by both doing a mason jar soil test and also getting values from the USDA soil survey type.

Doing the catch cup test to identify nozzle inches per hour and efficiency. I’ve also figured out my drip line systems inches per hour.

And I’m going through WUCOLS to figure out what my crop coefficient ought to be. I’m currently basing it just purely on the species factor and not looking at density or microclimate.

We are getting lots of rain right now, so the immediate first 2 weeks of watering is not an issue.

The question I have, is according to what I read on the internet, for the first year or two while drought tolerant plants are establishing they need to be watered more frequently. Should I accomplish this by keeping them on a fixed schedule? Or should I use a flex daily and tweak settings like root depth?

I want to maximize their immediate health, and also their long term ability to be drought tolerant. And use as little water as possible in this drought stricken state.

If Flex Daily is recommended, what settings should I start with and how and when should I tweak them? For example, should I start with the 15 inch root depth and increase it by 25% every year until it his 40 inches? Should I adjust the crop coefficient according to maturity, etc?

The WUCOLS handbook added an extra question for me there because it indicates that for new landscaping I should take into account that immature plants should have lower crop coefficients as they have less leaf canopy, and the smaller the leaf canopy the less water will be lost to evapotranspiration. That seems like it would mean that the plants would need to be watered less often, which is counter to the other internet advice which is that new plants need to be watered more often.

Also, any other suggestions to getting the best results in this new landscaping from the Rachio which I am not already doing would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks so much! I feel like I am learning a lot going through these forms and the linked materials.