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Underground sprinklers function through means of basic electronic and hydraulic technology. This valve and all of the sprinklers that will be activated by this valve are known as a zone. Upon activation, the solenoid, which sits on top of the valve is magnetized lifting a small stainless steel plunger in its center. By doing this, the activated (or raised) plunger allows air to escape from the top of a rubber diaphragm located in the center of the valve. Water that has been charged and waiting on the bottom of this same diaphragm now has the higher pressure and lifts the diaphragm. This pressurized water is then allowed to escape down stream of the valve through a series of pipes, usually made of PVC (higher pressure commercial systems) or polyethylene pipe (for typically lower pressure residential systems). At the end of these pipes and flush to ground level (typically) are pre-measured and spaced out sprinklers. These sprinklers can be fixed spray heads that have a set pattern and generally spray between 7–15 ft., full rotating sprinklers that can spray a broken stream of water from 20–40 ft., or small drip emitters that release a slow, steady drip of water on more delicate plants such as flowers and shrubs. use of indigenous materials also recommended.
Modern drip irrigation for flowers, plants and shrubs has arguably become the world's most valued innovation in agriculture since the invention in the 1930s of the impact sprinkler, which offered the first practical alternative to surface irrigation. Drip irrigation may also use devices called micro-spray heads, which spray water in a small area, instead of dripping emitters. These are generally used on tree and vine crops with wider root zones. Subsurface drip irrigation (SDI) uses permanently or temporarily buried dripperline or drip tape located at or below the plant roots. It is becoming popular for row crop irrigation, especially in areas where water supplies are limited or recycled water is used for irrigation. Careful study of all the relevant factors like land topography, soil, water, crop and agro-climatic conditions are needed to determine the most suitable drip irrigation system and components to be used in a specific installation.