Author Topic: Irrigation Season is Approaching  (Read 1281 times)

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Irrigation Season is Approaching
« on: March 21, 2016, 03:10:24 PM »
Spring seems to be coming early this year after a record-breaking, mild winter. Already a number of my trees are engulfed in buds and several shrubs are almost in leaf. The little boy in me sees all these signs and looks forward to fast-approaching day when I will charge the underground sprinkler system water lines and begin to water all the trees, grass, shrubs and hanging baskets automatically. Actually, I've always loved controlling water with electricity, and my school work from about grade 5 on is doodled often with depictions of underground sprinklers, aerial views and sprinkler layout plans. It should therefore come as no surprise that one of the first things I've done in every house I've owned is installed an underground sprinkler system.

This year I'm starting work on a new module in Decider to allow for more detailed water usage control for my sprinkler system. I came across a product brief from 1988 for Irritrol, Richdel and Hardie controllers & sprinklers. I used to collect such material from a local irrigation contractor (Regency Irrigation Ltd.) and one of the sales ladies there used to know me by name. Over 20 years later, I still remember that her name was Brenda. Of course, I'm sure they didn't have too many 12-year-olds coming in, asking about their latest products and amassing binders full of product guides, spec sheets and flyers. Anyway, reading through some of the features of these controllers got me thinking that it would not be that difficult to implement a number of the ones not already in Decider for better irrigation control. While I already have things like unlimited start times, rain / freeze sensor overrides, pump starts and soil moisture sensor feedback, I do not have an explicit feature that allows separate programs to be called for irrigation. Nor do I have the ability at the present time to dynamically increase or decrease the amount of water received. (Irritrol called this water budgeting.) All that to say, Decider 0.5.2 has a number of new features in the works, hopefully ready just in time to put them into use for this year's watering season.
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