Monday, June 29, 2009

Wet Spots & Flavor

It's summer time and the time for a refresher. (From my book Drip Irrigation for Every Landscape and All Climates)

In this illustration, in-line emitter tubing moistens the soil the entire length of the line but slightly below the surface, where the bulbous-shaped wet spots come together to form one nearly continuous moist zone. The emitters come pre-installed in tubing with 12-, 18-, 24-, 36-, and 48-inch spacings [they can be custom ordered at just about any interval—for an extra fee], but the type most commonly sold to gardeners is the 12-inch interval. The emitters inside the hose are rated to dispense either one-half- or one-gph [actually 0.6 and 0.92 gph]. The cost ranges from$22 to $30 for a 100-foot roll depending on the emitter [its emitters flow rate and whether or not it’s pressure compensating.]

If you've grouped your veggies by similar water zones it's time to think about reducing the amount of water a bit to enrich the flavor. Tomatoes are a great example. Over watered 'maters have nothing over store bought. But if tapered off of water once fruiting, the reduced water in the flesh concentrates the flavor. In some climates, you can gradually reduce the water all together by August for the best flavor as the roots are well established after growing throughout the continuous zone of moisture at the beginning of the season. Experiment!

Please post a comment - I want to know what you think.

Visit my web site to learn about my new book on drip irrigation and other gardening books.

NOTE: The comments section at the bottom of the post has disappeared. Click on the "___ Comments" button or the title under the "Blog Archives". Thanks, Robert

1 comment:

Megan said...

Hi Robert
Exactly when should the water start tapering off? When the tomatoes are forming or when they're little, or when they're big and still green?
If watering is cut back or stopped, what about the new flowers and fruit still forming further up the plant? And should most of the leaves be stripped off to stop them drooping?