Jul 21, 2015 3:32:00 PM / by Claude Kershner IV


According to the South Florida Water Management District, rainfall is well below average, close to drought conditions and this past May-June period was the ninth driest period since record keeping began in 1938. The average arrival date for the rainy season is May 20th. Yet, so far this year, the rainy season has not taken effect and it has been the hottest and driest past three months that I remember since moving to South Florida in 1998. Ocean Reef has been particularly dry. With this said, it is important to note your investment in landscaping and irrigation.

Your irrigation is a vital component in your landscape health and appearance, especially in dry or hot periods. Many systems are decades old and all systems require constant monitoring, maintenance and repair. If you do not perform routine maintenance and repair, it will not work – no matter how much water you use. The systems are installed mostly subterranean in a dynamic environment. There are shifting and moving roots and rocks that can push up move down or break pipes, heads, valve boxes and wires and cause malfunctions. Some of the common issues are as follows:

  • Multiple people changing the settings on the box
  • Broken rain sensors
  • Broken irrigation heads
  • Poor water pressure
  • Lack of coverage
  • Broken pipes

A typical run cycle for a system uses 3,500 gallons. At the cost of water in Monroe County Florida, this cycle costs about $30.00. Right now, your system should be running 3-5 days a week for about 20-30mins per zone. As homeowners, it is important to watch the water usage through your irrigation system. Sometimes, five hundred square feet of new sod is cheaper than the water bill if you run enough to compensate for the tail end of the dry season. Meaning, at what point is it cheaper to let your sod die and install new sod as opposed to using all the water to maintain it. Subsequently, it is important to learn from the conditions and repair the irrigation if necessary.

Reef Tropical Recommended Irrigation Check:

Each month your irrigation system will be run “zone by zone” in a test mode to inspect for proper coverage and/or any broken heads.  Minor repairs or adjustments for improved coverage will be made on the spot at no charge, as long as they can be made within our allotted time for the irrigation check.  This service is billed monthly and cost depends on the size of the irrigation system (#of zones) A typical 8 zones system service is billed monthly at $49.00. Beyond these minor adjustments, a licensed irrigation contractor will be engaged to make repairs. If the repaid is in excess of $200 (or any level you request)  your irrigation contractor will contact you for approvals. This is NOT a water management program. It is simply a proactive preventative measure to make sure water distribution is checked monthly.

Request Irrigation Check

Looks like we will be lacking rain with high heat for the next few days as well. 


Topics: Landscaping

Claude Kershner IV

Written by Claude Kershner IV

President Reef Tropical • Pool & Landscape

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