Archive for February 2008

Fickle February

One day the temperature is warm and caressing and billowy white clouds race across the sky shouting, “spring is coming, spring is coming!” The next day it snows. This tug of war between winter and spring has just begun and we will not see the end of it until the last feeble sputters of snow in late May. And then, suddenly, it will be summer.

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Interesting Data

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Last month I attended ProGreen Expo here in Denver, a week of classes and seminars (plus a big trade show) for landscape professionals. One of the classes I attended was an overview of irrigation system basics and, more importantly, water management practices. It was exciting to get some hard data that I can now apply to a concept I’ve been familiar with for many years now: water cycling.

The basic idea of cycle and soak irrigation is to match the precipitation rates (water output) of your sprinkler to the infiltration (absorption) rates of your soil. In soils that absorb water slowly (or if you are watering on a slope), you will have to apply water for shorter periods of time to prevent runoff (and waste). Multiple water applications (cycling) may then be necessary to meet the water needs of the plants. Here is the data that gives us a clearer idea of how long to run those sprinklers before runoff occurs:

Clay soil: rotor head = 18-24 minutes, spray head = 6-8 minutes.
Loam soil: rotor head = 36-42 minutes, spray heads = 12-14 minutes.
Sandy soil: rotor head = 60-72 minutes, spray heads = 20-24 minutes.

With a bit of research and some basic math you can become super efficient and “green” with your water use.

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Sustainable Landscaping Symposium

What: Passion to Action – Professional Practices for Now and in the Future.
The Front Range Sustainable Landscaping Coalition presents a full day of inspiration and information about sustainable landscape design and construction.

Keynote Speaker: Kim Sorvig, author of Sustainable Landscape Construction: Land-use, Landscape Construction and Climate Change

When: February 14, 8am-4pm

Where: Denver Botanic Gardens

Registration: DBG at 720.865.3580 or, course #08 BLL250

Cost: $60.00 pre-registered or $75.00 at the door

Sponsored by Denver Botanic Gardens, Denver Water, Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado and the Front Range Sustainable landscaping Coalition.

See you there!

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