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Guide to Lawn Sprinklers

Here's a handy guide to help you choose the right combination of sprinklers for your lawn.

All are readily available at garden centers or online for purchase.

Each type has pros and cons depending the area of the garden or lawn you want to water. Depending on your property you might need more than one.

Oscillating sprinkler

  • Provides the most coverage (up to 4000 square feet)
  • Waters quickly
  • Ideal for best in square or rectangular shaped lawns
  • A classic lawn maintenance tool

Rotary or Whirling Sprinkler

  • Sprinkler head spins and throws water out in a circular pattern
  • Provides 50 to 60 feet diameter of coverage
  • Waters slowly or quickly depending on setting
  • Ideal for small lawns or garden beds
  • Spray adjusts from mist to heavy rain

Imulse sprinkler

  • A single stream of water shoots out at intervals as the sprinkler head rotates a full or partial circle
  • Waters slowly
  • Provides 80 to 90 feet diameter of coverage
  • Ideal for large yards and beds, newly seeded lawns and clay soils, which are best watered slowly
  • Water flow is adjustable to suit the type the soil
  • Ideal for watering on windy days because spray is near ground level

Spray or fountain sprinkler

  • Ideal for small or irregularly shaped spaces
  • Waters slowly
  • Provides 10 to 35 feet of coverage
  • Several sprinkler heads spray water upwards like a fountain. The noodlehead sprinkler is a version of this; the sprinkler heads are actually flexible tube-shaped nozzles

Walking sprinkler

  • Propelled across the lawn, guided by the the hose
  • Cover up to 40 feet per hour
  • Waters slowly
  • Ideal for large spaces, areas with curves, or hills


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