Green King’s Deep Drip Tree Watering Stakes irrigate, fertilize and aerate trees, shrubs, plants and bushes directly at the roots. Through a shorter duration required for watering, Deep Drip has been shown to conserve between 20-70% of water when compared to traditional irrigation, in addition to promoting deeper root systems (which helps prevent erosion) and aiding in better fertilizer delivery.
Deep Drip fully saturates the ground around a tree with water, allowing the roots to grow deep and strong instead of horizontally at the surface, possibly resulting in exposed roots. These tree watering stakes are designed to work with a garden hose, flood irrigation, or in conjunction with an automatic landscape drip system. A standard 1/4″ drip line easily connects to the Deep Drip stake allowing for water or fertilizer delivery directly to the root zone. No matter the type of tree, to cultivate maximum growth, it’s important to water where you want the roots to grow in addition to where they currently are. Since roots typically follow the water source, utilization of Deep Drip stakes helps show the tree roots the path to grow deep.
When irrigation and nutrients are delivered into the ground faster and more completely, you can water for shorter periods, decreasing overall consumption. Green King’s patent-pending Deep Drip tree root watering devices come in three sizes: 14-1/2” (for small trees and shrubs), 24-1/2” (average trees in the first several years), and 36” (for well-established and deep-rooted trees).
How the Deep Drip Works
The stakes are constructed of sturdy ABS plastic, with multiple holes in the bottom half of the spike that allows water to flow out, while a mesh filter keeps dirt from clogging the tube. The reinforced cap (which is left exposed above the ground) is resistant to UV damage and acts as a cover and protector to the emitter head while acting as a marker so the user may relocate the stake at a future time as the roots extend from the base of the tree.
Installation can be performed during initial planting, or by driving the unit into the ground around an existing tree. Locations chosen should be approximately halfway between the tree trunk and the outer edge of the canopy. Younger trees are recommended to have 2-3 stakes on opposing sides of the base, while older trees can accommodate 5-6 stakes.
Deep Drip stakes can be utilized with various types of irrigation systems. A standard garden hose can be connected to the open end of the stake (with the cap removed) or a berm can be created around the tree trunk to keep water contained while it penetrates the stakes.
Some users have reported reduction of water usage by as much as 70%, though actual savings depends on quantities of water delivered, soil density, tree consumption, etc. One customer reported using two 4 gph (gallons per hour) emitters just below the ground, running for 1 hour daily. After this daily watering, the owner was still unable to penetrate the ground with a probe and very little moisture was visible around the tree. After connecting two Deep Drip stakes to the existing 4 gph emitters, and running for only half an hour, the moisture content around the base of the tree allowed the owner to insert a probe almost 2 feet into the ground.
Click here to learn more about Deep Drip.
Sarah Gudeman is a mechanical design engineer and licensed EIT in the state of Nebraska. Ms. Gudeman also is a LEED Accredited Professional (BD+C) and an active member of the USGBC Nebraska Flatwater Chapter’s board of directors. She specializes in building energy modeling and audits, sustainable design and environmentally-friendly practices.