I’ve been doing some work over at Redeemer getting their irrigation all set for when the fruit trees arrive. I wanted to test the lines to make sure everything worked before moving forward and we found a number of leaks. Now these aren’t just leaks like leaky faucets where you have a drip a second that could lose 2700 gallons a year, these leaks were flowing water, so we made sure to repair them with a slip fixes pictured here. Fortunately the water here had been shut off for some time.  Unfortunately, Redeemer is a private school and does not have a staffed irrigation plumber. I was able to help them out here after wall, we want them to conserve water and not waste it.

Slip fix used to repair some pipes at Redeemer.

Now, were there was once asphalt that is now removed, there is no existing irrigation. So the plan is to continue the line all the way down to the end. Where the pipe ends there is a slope that causes the pipe to reach the surface, we are going to have to bury the pipe to make it deeper or set the pipe lower here.  There is enough fill dirt available to bury the pipe instead of making it deeper, and because I’m worried about pressure loss I’d rather not make too many angles in the pipe. I’m using this High Density PolyEthylene(HDPE) pipe(the blue colored pipe) that is UV resistant to continue the line so it is safe being exposed to the surface, additionally, I am running it along a corner so it stays out of the way of a people walking by. It will likely be buried under at least a couple inches of soil and mulch anyways, but it’s always best to play it safe.

Next step to connect the HDPE to the PVC.

I am using this pipe for a number of reasons. The HDPE is more environmentally safe than PVC when exposed to UV, it is much faster to use saving me tons of time, and much cleaner, there are no chemical glues and primers needed to connect the fittings so I don’t go home with purple fingers and there are no inevitable spills into the soil. Also because it is more flexible, there is less pressure loss when making soft curves rather than hard angles with traditional PVC. It also comes in rolls instead of long pieces like PVC, so it is easier to transport. The HDPE pipe has rigid walls and isn’t to be confused with polyethylene drip tubing which is much more flexible and softer with no rigid walls (because it is low density). As you can see I have a long distance to go so reducing pressure loss is important. The down side to this HDPE blu-lock pipe is that since it is relatively new I have to make sure I order all the parts I need ahead of time, or I’ll be stuck waiting. Also many fittings that are common for PVC pipe aren’t yet made for this type of pipe so I have to make sure I know when it’s appropriate to use Polyethylene vs. PVC.

A Bobcat, some HDPE pipe and a wall.

In that photo you can see the side of a Bobcat, Joe was also there moving some dirt around to make it easier to move around the pipe I had been working on. Tomorrow, Joe will be burying all the PVC and our next step is to wait for the trees that are being donated by Tom Spellman from Dave Wilson Nursery.

Tomatoes in their new cages.

Redeemer’s Tomatoes are also growing quite well. At Maleene’s request I brought over some tomato cages for them so that they have something to grow onto. Unfortunately The Home Depot has been sold out of the tall tomato cages for the past week so I wasn’t able to supply them with those(it’s that time of year where tomato cages go like hotcakes), but these will do fine for now.