Watering tall trees

I have a number of tall (30’-40’) old pine trees growing on my property, on a pretty steep slope. My soil (Southern California) is supposed to be sandy loam. This particular area seems to be quite compacted. The previous owner used to water them using fixed full circle sprinklers. I’m starting to wonder though, if I need to be watering them at all. Given their size and how extensive their root system must be, how much effect will a sprinkler have anyway? And if I do need to continue watering them, how do I do it effectively and without bankrupting myself?

My long-term plan is to replace them with green giant arborvitae because they are too close to the house.

I have one very large pine tree on my property (24+" Diameter, 60+ feet tall), and do water around it using a separate timer. But I do it not for the benefit of the pine tree; the pine draws all the moisture from around it. I do it for the shrubs and smaller trees in the area. By giving the pine extra water to use, it draws less from the shrubs and grass around it.

So, IMHO, if there’s nothing you care about around the pines, don’t bother. They’ll survive and probably thrive. But if there are other plantings within their canopy, you may need to water them additionally and/or provide more water to the pines.

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This is what I’ve been thinking as well and I’m glad see that I wasn’t way off. I suspect the pines were planted on the hill slope for soil control (that’s why I am a bit worried about eventually removing them). A half of them have nothing growing under, the other half have nothing but ice plant growing under them. So I’ll keep watering that.