All irrigation systems are designed to provide water to the plants on your property, but not all irrigation systems are designed to do so in the same manner. This means that each type of irrigation system has a distinctive set of advantages and disadvantages. Sprinklers and drip systems are two of the most common types of irrigation systems available on the market. Understanding what the differences are between the two of them, and what benefits each offers, can help you choose the irrigation system that best fits your watering needs.
Sprinkler systems are one of the most common types of irrigation systems available, largely because they are easy to set up and can cover a wide area. Sprinklers can be used to spray water vast differences, with different sprinkler heads spraying water in different patterns and over shorter or longer spaces. This means that you can customize your sprinkler system to the size of your yard.
However, sprinkler systems do come with some downsides. Notably, they can increase the risk of erosion due to the simple amount of water that they deliver to the area around them. Further, since they use quite a bit of water, the utility costs associated with running sprinkler systems, especially for a larger area, can be quite high. Further, since water is sprayed over a wide area and through the air, there runs the risk of large amounts of water evaporating before it gets the chance to reach the soil. Finally, since sprinklers work on targeting a larger area instead of a specific one, their operation comes with the risk of watering weeds and other pesky, unwanted plants.
Drip Irrigation Systems
Drip irrigation systems, on the other hand, are made out of soaker hoses or similar components that allow water to leak out slowly over time. This means that they only target a specific area of your property, reducing the amount of wasted water as they irrigate right next to the roots of the plant. This also helps reduce weed growth, as there is less water provided to empty spaces in your yard.
However, drip irrigation systems can thus only be used to specifically target plants that require watering, and are not well suited to irrigating larger areas of plants. Their low flow rate also means that they may not provide adequate amounts of water for extremely hot temperatures, which can lead to scorching and damage for particularly fragile plants.