Landscape & Irrigation

January/February 2016

Landscape and Irrigation is read by decision makers throughout the landscape and irrigation markets — including contractors, landscape architects, professional grounds managers, and irrigation and water mgmt companies and reaches the entire spetrum.

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Page 16 of 35 Landscape and Irrigation January/February 2016 17 IRRIGATION AND WATER MANAGEMENT many flow sensors lose accuracy at low flow rates, which can lead to inaccurate readings for low-flow systems such as drip irrigation. Affordable retrofit flow solutions with higher-reso- lution flow sensors that accurately measure high-efficiency drip systems are now available to help with this problem. Even though almost half of all sites experience water line breaks at one time or another, more than 90 percent of sites don't have any kind of flow management. Adding flow technol- ogy to a two-way smart irrigation controller provides not only water-use data visibility, but also the control to make remote, immediate real-time changes. This technology makes it easy to respond to catastrophic breaks and leaks, protect property as- sets, and manage water resources effectively. So, what's next on the horizon for new smart water manage- ment technologies? We think the next areas for technology im- provements that will make a meaningful impact on the industry will be more reliable and affordable infield wireless communi- cation solutions, and enhanced Cloud-based flow management solutions for complex sites that deliver intuitive graphical user interfaces for balancing complicated flow demands (that don't require a Ph.D. to operate). In the meantime, don't let an early bad experience with the first-generation smart controllers scare you from checking out how far smart irrigation solutions have evolved. We are now in a truly new era, where the tremendous power and efficiency of information technology has made its way into the hands of landscape professionals — and they actually like using it, day in and day out. Why? Because it saves them and their customers time, money and water. In the end, that is the evolutionary goal of smart water management: less stupid, more smart. And few things are dumber than wasting time, money and water when there is a whole wild world to enjoy. Chris Spain is CEO and president of HydroPoint Data Systems. LI

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