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Post  nosmok on 2/25/2013, 5:57 pm

Setting up my SFG and I ran underground PVC lines to my boxes supplied by a hose bib. Planning on putting each box on a Orbit hose timer (model 91213) and run lengths of 1/4" drip emitter lines the length of each 12 foot box, spaced a foot apart. I found that there are 6 inch and 12 inch spacing on the emitter lines. Any suggestions if one is better than another for SFG?

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Post  RoOsTeR on 2/25/2013, 6:03 pm

6" you'll want the most coverage you can get with Mel's Mix.


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Post  Coelli on 3/21/2013, 11:49 pm

Nosmok, I'd love to see and/or hear about this when you're done - I also have 12' boxes (12'x2' and 12'x3') and installed bubblers between EVERY square (that was a lot of bubblers!); but I can only run one box at a time because the water pressure is not high enough so it means I need to add another timer, a multi-outlet hose bib, etc etc... I've been thinking about just ripping it all out and putting in drip line with emitters every 6". The drip irrigation is so easy it would probably only take an hour or two to replace it all, I just want to make sure it will work. Smile Alternately there's porous soaker hose but in my experience it leaks and starts to spray so maybe the drip emitters would be better.

I figured a line up each 12' edge, then another line every 6" across the length of the box. That's 5 lines for my 12x2 and 9 for the 12x3. Easier than all those bubblers were, that's for sure!

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Post  jazzycat on 3/22/2013, 12:49 am

I saw a watering MAT at the hydroponics store that you install underneath the beds. I wonder how that would work? It seems like it might work better than a drip system, and it would be very easy to put down. Probably also work as a weed barrier.

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Post  nosmok on 3/22/2013, 9:23 pm

Emitter drip lines 32020113
This is how I have it set up right now. 3 lines of 6 inch emitters wire tied to my green plastic coated wire grid. I may add outside lines along the edges if I dont get enough saturation. I have underground 1/2 inch pvc run to each of 2 beds tied into a hose bib with a pressure reducer at the bib. Each bed has it's own timer set to run for 30 minutes twice a day and staggered to go off 31 minutes after each other.

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Post  Coelli on 3/23/2013, 2:12 am

Cool, thanks for the picture. Smile Last year I did porous soaker tubing in about the same configuration you have it, up the sides of each square. And yes, the outside edges of the box did stay pretty dry and I had to run separate lines for those too. In my climate I found that the middles of the squares stayed fairly dry, so I'm thinking about putting them every 6" this time (up the middles too). Not sure if that's overkill or not though.

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Post  johnsonjlj on 3/23/2013, 8:36 am

We battled powdery mildew in our garden last year, so when we redesigned our garden this year we installed 1/2" irrigation tubing between beds and T tape in the beds. Living in Florida, we need the water because of how hot and humid it gets, so we ran 2 T tapes per foot in the 4' beds with 3 total in the 2' beds, and with the 8" spacing between emitters, it does a great job of getting everything watered. We have 3 zones in our 12" beds: the two 4'x16' beds, the three 4'x12' beds, and then all of the 2' boxes are on a zone (four 8' beds and two 6' beds). These are all on automatic timers for 1 hour every 2-3 days (depending upon the weather) with the start times for each zone staggered. There is a learning curve with installing the T tape connections, but so far it's working well.

This is my daughter's non-sfg strawberry bed (it was SUPPOSED to be sfg, but dear hubby did the planting for me! Shocked )
Emitter drip lines 2013-014

The 1/2" pipe comes in 100 foot rolls and can go underground and is much less expensive than pvc. We have our own well and installed the pressure regulators, timers and irrigation filters AFTER our whole house filter and , with the timers staggered, everything gets plenty of water and we have about 350 sq ft in our garden. We covered the 1/2" pipe with pvc where it comes up beside the boxes so that the weed-eater won't destroy it.

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Post  GreenGene on 3/23/2013, 9:14 pm

I recently completed my table top beds and drip irrigation system with 1/2 gph emitters on 6" centers. I originally watered for 15 minutes once per day per Dripworks recommendation. But since my beds are on blocks, I noticed that after 7 to 8 minutes, they began draining quite a bit. So I reduced the water-on interval to 8 minutes and now the timer closes the valve just as they begin to drain. Also now that plants have started growing, I notice that the closer a plant is to an emitter, the better it seems to thrive. Crops with multiple plants/sqft and especially those with 16 plants/sqft (carrot, scallion) are more of a challenge than a sqft containing a single plant with an emitter guaranteed nearby. So, I am currently in the process of beefing up the irrigation system by adding more drip line with with the intention of getting most plants as close to an emitter as I can. Then, I may be able to reduce the watering interval again, possibly to 5 or 6 minutes or so, but twice per day. Other tweaks include raising the emitters off the Mel's Mix so they physically drip visually. (Staple staking the drip line to the mix bed didn't work well for me.) I am also installing more micro valves which I hope will be beneficial when I get more experience in producing staggered continuous crops.

Drawings of my current layout versus the rework I have started.

Gardening is a new experience. Advice or tips would be appreciated.


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