If you work in water you know that July is smart irrigation month. If you don’t work in water perhaps you stumbled onto something about it online or in the media if your local water utility is a savvy marketer.
Traditionally, the numbers indicate that outdoor water-use peaks in July. And if data also indicates that 50% of water applied to landscapes is lost to inefficiency, then we might also conclude that outdoor water waste spikes in July as well.
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The Four Elements
July is #SmartIrrigationMonth! We're showcasing @UF_IFAS expertise all month to help you use water wisely. #UFSIM pic.twitter.com/Hp1ONoYugn— UF/IFAS IrriGator (@IrriGatorUF) July 2, 2015
Here at IrriGator we know a good educational/marketing opportunity when we see one. So in the run up to this month we set about unpacking the smart irrigation concept. In irrigation the term is usually used to describe a device or technology, but the practice of watering wisely encompasses much more. Here, then, are the four elements of smart irrigation as interpreted by UF/IFAS experts Gail Hansen, Michael Dukes and Kati Migliaccio.
For #SmartIrrigationMonth @UF_IFAS expert Gail Hansen shares how landscape choice/design helps save water. #UFSIM pic.twitter.com/SPGGiRKiHO— UF/IFAS IrriGator (@IrriGatorUF) July 8, 2015
Time plays a big part in efficient irrigation. @UF_IFAS expert Michael Dukes explains. #SmartIrrigationMonth #UFSIM pic.twitter.com/hfoQkbISOU— UF/IFAS IrriGator (@IrriGatorUF) July 15, 2015
Technology plays an important role in #SmartIrrigationMonth. @UF_IFAS water expert Kati Migliaccio talks tech: #UFSIM pic.twitter.com/ETAHDAK7iU— UF/IFAS IrriGator (@IrriGatorUF) July 22, 2015
Irrigation system design is fundamental to efficiency. @UF_IFAS specialist Michael Dukes goes into detail: #UFSIM pic.twitter.com/iN0Cb9d0uM— UF/IFAS IrriGator (@IrriGatorUF) July 29, 2015
Meanwhile In the Community
While we were busy contributing to the wealth of smart irrigation content online, there were plenty of workshops and events around Florida to inform the public in person. Some of which included:
Kelly Greer of @UF_IFAS Orange County leads the efficient irrigation workshop's hands-on session. #OCEIW pic.twitter.com/3THe60gYG7— UF/IFAS IrriGator (@IrriGatorUF) July 9, 2015
.@UF_IFAS & @SFWMD experts collaborate on irrigation efficiency workshops for urban & Ag audiences. (via @hydroKati) pic.twitter.com/fr5iOMDkJF— UF/IFAS IrriGator (@IrriGatorUF) July 17, 2015
Further, the main UF campus saw the inauguration of a new trial for the Smartirrigation urban lawn app in North Florida.
The smart irrigation turf app begins its North FL trials this week. @hydroKati explains: http://t.co/Co3Hp4PPfl pic.twitter.com/rn2rs7h1ub— UF/IFAS IrriGator (@IrriGatorUF) July 21, 2015
The study site for this trial includes a host of smart technology and will generate additional useful data on the water saving potential of these devices.
Closing BigI would be remiss if I failed to mention the smart irrigation efforts of Miami-Dade’s Urban Conservation Unit. The South Florida-based group saved the best for last in July with an informative video polling a variety of industry and academic experts on how each defines smart irrigation. The answers may surprise you.