Deep Drip® Product Installation
Step 1: Location
Designate a location for installation: Choose a spot free from underground lines and pipes; trees are recommended to have 2-3 stakes surrounding the base of the tree. If starting with 2 stakes, place on opposing sides of tree or when using 3 stakes (recommended) place in a triangular pattern (fig. 1). For optimal watering of both shallow and deep roots, you can include an emitter at the surface to water in combination with Deep Drip. In areas with higher saline content, this will also help leach salt out of the soil.
Step 2: Installation
New Tree Installation: After your tree has been placed in the hole, insert 2-3 Deep Drip stakes vertically in the hole surrounding the tree. The stakes should be placed close to the base of the tree, without going into the root ball, before back-filling with soil. The top of your Deep Drip stake can either be above ground level (recommended) or below ground, depending on your preference. This of course is the easiest method of installation.
Existing Tree Installation: Since your tree is already in place, we recommend inserting a minimum of 2-3 Deep Drip stakes vertically around the base of your tree. On your existing tree, the stakes should be placed just inside the drip line, also known as the tree’s canopy. For best overall coverage, using 3 stakes placed on a triangular pattern is what we recommend. If you have a more mature tree and you feel your tree needs more water, you may choose to use additional stakes. As a guideline, look at the size of your trees canopy and consider placing the additional stakes every 4-5 feet apart, all around the base of your tree. This is just a guideline and we trust you will make the best decision for your plant. The top of your Deep Drip stake can either sit above ground level (recommended) or below ground, depending on your preference.
When installing Deep Drip on an existing tree where no hole exists, you will need to determine what the best and easiest option will be for your installation. Please remember safety first and always wear protective eye-wear. Now that we’ve touched on your safety, you’re ready for your Deep Drip installation. You can either hammer your Deep Drip stakes into the ground manually, using a rubber mallet or 3-5 lb. sledge hammer or use an auger bit to drill the hole first. To drive into the ground using a rubber mallet or 3-5 lb. sledge hammer, we recommend softening the soil with water first, place the slotted cap on the open end of the shaft without the drip line inserted. Using a heavier weighted sledge hammer, or hitting the cap at an angle instead of the very top of the domed cap, may result in failure and/or cracking. Please use the cap to hammer the stake in and do not directly hammer the uncapped end into the ground as this could break or destroy the shaft. Hammer Deep Drip completely into the ground or leave the cap and top hole visible, whichever is preferable (fig. 2).
Step 3: Installation with Drip Line, Garden Hose or Flood Irrigation
Drip Line: When positioned in the ground, remove cap and insert end of existing drip line with selected emitter attached into the shaft aligning the drip line with the slot in the cap. Re-install cap to secure drip line and stop excess debris from entering the shaft (fig.3).
Garden Hose: When using with a hose, we recommend that you create a small berm/tree well around your tree to hold in the water and prevent runoff. Watering this way will allow the water to saturate the shallow roots near the surface and eventually flow down into the stakes to water the deeper roots. Bury 2-3 Deep Drip stakes equally spaced within the berm around the tree. We suggest that you keep the top hole above the ground. Place the garden hose just inside the berm/tree well and turn the hose on. When the tree well starts to fill up, the water will flow into the top hole of the stakes and down to the roots of your tree/plant, watering more deeply at the roots. If placing a berm/tree well around your tree doesn’t work for you, you could also remove the caps from the stakes; place a slow flowing hose on top of the open shaft and the water will flow down into the stake, watering deeply at the root zone. The harder the ground, the slower and longer you will need to saturate the root zone (fig.4).
Flood Irrigation: When using with flood irrigation, we recommend that you bury 2-3 Deep Drip stakes equally spaced around the base of the tree leaving the cap on and the top hole exposed above the ground. When the flood irrigation starts to flow, the water will flow into the top hole of the stakes and down to the roots of your tree/plant, watering more deeply at the roots. Watering this way will allow the water to saturate the shallow roots near the surface and eventually flow down into the stakes to water the deeper roots.
Step 4: Watering, Fertilization & Nutrients
Fertilization & Nutrients: Pour a small amount of liquid, powder or water soluble granulated tree / plant fertilizer or nutrients directly into the shaft after positioning in the ground. Water will pass through and slowly dissolve nutrients, feeding your tree and plants at their roots. Using the recommended amount of fertilizer per package instructions, we highly recommend evenly dispersing your chosen fertilizer among all the installed stakes per tree, to give it the best overall coverage and prevent burning the trees / plants roots. Please read the package instructions carefully and remember not to over fertilize.
Watering and Fertilization: Please ask your local nursery professional for specific recommendations on ‘watering levels, emitters, and different types of fertilizer specific to your tree/plant’s needs.
Step 5: Removal of Stakes, Root Intrusion & Re-positioning
To Remove & For Root Intrusion: Insert a rod or screwdriver through the top holes in the main shaft just below the cap. Slide the rod through the shaft, twist and pull up. Twisting the shaft is recommended for easier removal (fig.5).
To Re-position: Your trees getting bigger, no problem! Your Deep Drip stakes were also designed to be re-positioned as your tree grows larger. Simply remove all of your stakes and re-position them so that they sit just inside the drip line or inside edge of your trees canopy. At this time, you may choose to add additional stakes, if needed.
Cleaning Your Stakes:
Should the tube/filter become clogged due to a buildup of mineral deposits, extract the stake (Step 5) and dip into a solution that dissolves calcium. Rinse with clean water and then re-insert into the ground. Remember, you will be re-installing these stakes back into the soil, so please make sure to thoroughly rinse all the solution out of the stake.
At one time or another, you’ve probably seen roots come up to the surface in the lawn or even seen roots tear up a sidewalk or foundation. I know have. If there’s a water source, it’s likely that the roots will travel in the direction of the water. If you’re concerned about root intrusion in your stakes, we suggest twisting your stakes once every six months (Step 5) to help guard against the roots entering into your stakes.
Water Emitters & Watering Times:
There are many different brands and types of drip line emitters on the market today, so we suggest asking your local nursery or irrigation professional for specific recommendations on watering levels and emitters. Your local nursery professional should be well equipped to help you select the appropriate emitters and watering times that will work best for your tree / plant varieties needs.
Troubleshooting: if soil is too dense, we suggest pre-soaking the area first and/or use a soil softener to soften the ground before inserting. Once the surface area is well saturated, try hammering the stake into the ground as far as it will go, next leave the stake in the ground, take the cap off and run water from a garden hose directly into the stake to start softening up the soil from below. Once you feel the soil has been saturated with enough water, place the cap back on and repeat the process until you have driven the stake all the way in until just the top holes are sitting above the ground. You may need to repeat this process a few times, but if definitely helps. If you hit a rock or a boulder, your Deep Drip stake will need to be moved to a new location. Your Deep Drip stakes are durable, so durable in fact, we guarantee them not to break, up installation. Unfortunately, they won’t go through a rock or a boulder. Although the Deep Drip stakes were designed to be hammered into the ground, an easier option would be to drill a hole into the ground with an auger bit to clear a pathway for the unit to be installed. Again, please, make sure you are aware of any underground lines or pipes and do not insert where they may exist.
Thank you for purchasing your Deep Drip Watering Stakes. We want you to be completely happy with your purchase, so please let us know if we can help in any way.