Sprinkler time again

It was some winter in Midwest, but we can begin to think of sprinklers again!
As an excited newbie, I'd like some help selecting the best sprinklers for my tasks:
(1) I have two small gardens in the front: each about 20x20. This is not lawn, but various plants. What would be a good tyoe of sprinker for this situation? Water should come down gently, evenly all over, and high enough to clear small plants and shrubs.
(2) In the back I have a 60x40 yard with a diagonal path in the middle, splitting the yard in two triangles. This is all lawn. I'd like to avoid the path as much as possible.
I would greatly appreciate advice on types as well as brands.
My local gardening store, which seems fancy by Home Depot or Sears standards, carries gardena and Dramm(?). But I can mail-order if something else would be more suitable.
Thank you very much.
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wrote:

Drip irrigation and mulch. Sprinklers are inefficient and wasteful. Watering leaves and flowers can encourage mildew and reduce harvest of fruits.
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Billy

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: Drip irrigation and mulch. Sprinklers are inefficient and wasteful. : Watering leaves and flowers can encourage mildew and reduce harvest of : fruits.
Just wanted to clarify that what I am calling "garden" is just two 20'x20' patches that happen to have small plants rather than grass, no fruit trees etc.
Any recommendations in light of that?
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wrote:

i second the drip irrigation & mulch. wetting the leaves of almost any garden plant can cause fungus/mildew. it's far less wasteful to aim the water where the plants actually need it (roots) & then keep the moisture in with mulch. lee
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I use drip hoses.
<http://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en-us&q=drip+hose&ie=UTF - 8&oe=UTF-8>
Leave them exposed and if they leak .....
These on a timer.
Bill who has a nice spring rain now but down to about 35F in two night then maybe garden stuff can go do it's stuff.
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: I use drip hoses.
I am not familiar with them (an apartment person all life). How do they work? Do you lay them above ground or do they have to be buried underneath? If I visualize "drip", how do they get water some distance from them? Sorry about my ignorance but all help appreciated.
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wrote:

it's a hose, either with tiny holes or made of a permeable type material, that drips or oozes water at low pressure. it usually lays on the surface, but can sometimes be placed under the mulch. you lay it in a wavy pattern through the garden & turn it on for a couple hours once/week. good soil has excellent capillary action, so the water will spread throughout the garden area, but it won't be getting your path or house wet, nor the leaves of your plants. it doesn't waste water by spraying it up in the air (where it's no good for the plants anyway) if you have heavy clay soil, soaker or drip hoses don't work so well, but then you'll be having lots of *other* problems with your gardens anyway... very few plants do well in clay. lee
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If you have clay soil, you should amend it with sand (20% - 30%) and compost (30% - 40% wouldn't be too much depending on how much clay there is), 10% manure, plus rock phosphate, and some wood ashes. If you have clay soil, that is;-)
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I found the drip hoses to put out more water near the beginning of the hose and less water at the end (uneven watering). Plus, they can be tricky to place on a slope.
If you have new transplants, put a pinhole on the bottom of a filled plastic gallon jug with a loose cap. The jugs are somewhat unsightly, free and effective, but I only use them for a day.
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wrote:

re: Wetting leaves, depends on when you do it. In my area (So. Calif coastal), which is basically a desert, it is desirable to hose off the leaves from time to time, just to get rid of the dust. However, the time should be carefully chosen. Very early morning is the best; before the sun comes up. I know there is dispute about whether water drops on leaves act as lenses, focussing the sun destructively, but I'd rather be conservative. The other good time is late afternoon, so the water doesn't stay on the leaves overnight, potentially causing fungus/mildew. Even those times have to be tweaked, depending on the seasons (how high the sun is in the sky, and when it rises/sets).
Persephone
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wrote:

And some say the best time to water is during the hottest time of the day because that is when the plant needs the water most. We do have lower humidity on the west coast so you probably could get away with watering the leaves during the height of the summer heat. But water in the flowers is just asking for a bad set and watering the leaves in the fall will let you be the first one on the block with mildew (That probably got started back during the heat of the summer and only stated spreading when the weather cooled down). Otherwise, if you are East of the Rockies, watering the tomatoes leaves is a reeeeally bad idea.
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