close up image of wet grass for lawn irrigation system

An expert’s guide to lawn irrigation

Once you’ve expertly landscaped your garden – from retaining walls to turf – you certainly want to think about irrigation. After all, water is the most essential element of almost any garden space. And while you can certainly hand water your garden – and many of us love to do just that – lawn irrigation can save you a lot of time. It can also ensure that your garden is getting just the right amount of water at just the right time. So what are the considerations you should keep in mind when planning your lawn irrigation? sprinklers

An Expert’s Guide to Lawn Irrigation


There are fantastic benefits to lawn irrigation. First, it’s cost effective. In fact, irrigation is a relatively cheap element to your turf installation. And it’s particularly cost effective when you factor in the costs of water saved and lawn maintenance avoided. Second, it saves you precious time. Hand watering can be a time intensive exercise. And when you have a job, a family or other responsibilities, it’s sometimes hard to get into the garden as often as you’d like. Irrigation ensures that the watering is efficient and effective. Third, it’s water saving. When you have correctly installed lawn irrigation, it not only saves you time and money, but also water. Because it only waters when and where you need it, and ensures you can water at precisely the right time of day, there’s less water wastage. And that’s great for the environment and the pocket.

Types of lawn irrigation systems

When you are considering how to set up your lawn irrigation system, there are four main types to consider.
  1. Sprinkler irrigation
  2. Drip or trickle irrigation
  3. Surface irrigation
  4. Sub-surface irrigation
image of sprinkler lawn irrigation system spraying water on the grass in the sunlight

Sprinkler irrigation

This is a fantastic option for lawn irrigation in residential homes in Australia. It’s a method that delivers water via air to the lawn. And it encompasses both in ground, permanent sprinklers, and sprinkler attachments on the end of your garden hose. Sprinklers are a fantastic option. They can include rotating lawn sprinklers, static lawn sprinklers or even micro sprinklers, which means you can choose precisely the right type for your space. The ease of turning these sprinklers on an off – whether manual or automatic – means that it’s easy to ensure your lawn is getting water how and when it needs it. Permanent sprinklers – those built into the ground – are a great idea, particularly if you’re laying new turf. The downside of sprinklers is that depending on when you use them, you could be losing a fair amount of water to evaporation – particularly here in Queensland. image of a drip irrigation system pipe with one drop of water coming off and falling to the dirt

Drip or trickle irrigation

This is a technique that works best for garden beds or small lawn spaces. As a type of micro-irrigation, drip irrigation distributes water through hoses (emitters) as tiny drops or streams directly into the soil surface. This is a great choice for homes with lower water pressure as they need less flow than sprinkler systems.

Surface and subsurface irrigation

Surface irrigation and subsurface irrigation are primarily used for large plots of land or farms. Surface irrigation, for example, generally uses a gravity-based controlled ‘flooding’ technique. Here water is dispensed in a flow over the surface of the soil through the use of gravity. Subsurface irrigation typically utilises water from the water table, and water is applied beneath the surface of the soil. wet-grass

The best lawn irrigation system for residential homes in Australia

While the best lawn irrigation system certainly depends on your individual needs, in general we recommend in-built lawn sprinkler systems. These are both efficient and effective. And in terms of cost-benefit, are well worth the investment – particularly if you are in your long-term home. If you are just thinking about laying a new turf, this is an excellent choice. The next best option is a revolving sprinkler connected to your garden hose. Because it delivers water at high speed, there is less loss to evaporation and wind. If you already have an established lawn, this is the ideal option, image of rotating sprinkler on a green lawn

How often should you water your lawn?

Once you’ve organised your lawn irrigation system, the next question you need to answer is how often you should water your lawn. Our landscaping and turf experts have weighed in on this question as well! Read more: How often should you water your lawn? Read more: How often should you water your lawn in winter? And, of course, we’re always on hand to answer any of your questions about lawn irrigation systems! Once you’ve got your turf laid and your irrigation system set up, summer is a great time for more projects. Don’t forget your DIY fire pit for summer s’mores or a new water feature to spruce up the space. Keep your eye on our how to and product info pages for more excellent tips and tricks. And get in touch with us at any time, to talk through all your backyard projects this summer.