Smarter Lawn Watering


How often have you seen lawns being watered during a downpour?

Do you know that over half the water used in America is for irrigation and most lawns are over watered?   Are you interested in virtually eliminating unnecessary lawn watering while improving the health and appearance of your lawn?  An article from the University of Florida Extension discusses two very cool devices.
The typical control device for an irrigation system has the day and time programmed in.  This system does not take into account how much moisture the lawn has already received – it goes off at the same time and day no matter what.
Two devices are on the market that can help this problem – a rain sensor irrigation shut-off switch and soil moisture based irrigation control.
A rain sensor is an irrigation shut-off switch that prevents an automatic sprinkler system from operating during or after a rainfall.  The device overrides a scheduled irrigation after a specific amount of rainfall has occurred.  When the collected rainwater has evaporated from the device, scheduled irrigations resume.   These are simple and economical tools for preventing unnecessary irrigation.  They are available where irrigation supplies are sold for about $30.
The second device is a soil moisture sensor.  This senses the actual soil moisture levels and prevents irrigation from occurring when the moisture level is adequate.  This technology has been available for over a decade but has recently become reliable enough and affordable for residential use. Depending on the sophistication of the device, the cost ranges from about $100 to over $300.

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