How can soaker hoses be kept insect free?

Steve Batley recommends that soaker hoses are the best form of irrigation of vegie patches: http://3ceco.destaging.com/questions/what-is-the-best-way-of-watering-a-vegie-garden/?ui=1. However, I've received advice from elsewhere that insects invade that type of hose and clog it up. It seems that is common with all types of fixed systems. I know that the micro-sprays I've previously used have to be checked regularly for ant blockages. That is easier than checking for similar problems in a weeping hose. What would be the best way to check for insect invasion in soaker hoses and what is the most efficient way to arrange them?

Asked by Gregory Olsen

1 answer

  • Hi Greg, The weeping type hoses made from recycled rubber don't get insects in them as the holes are tiny. If something gets in it's easy to cut off the end and flush it out. The brown drip type with the built in drippers every 20 or 30cm are pretty good too for the same reason, and they have built in filters. It's good practice to block the open end when not in use as lizards often make their homes in the hose.

    How you arrange them depends on the soil type - most people in the eastern suburbs will have sandy soil which allows the water to infiltrate easily so it doesn't spread widely. I find that spacing of 30cm works well for veg. Plant your thirsty veg close to the hose, drought tolerant ones further away.

    More importantly, add heaps of compost and mulch.

    Answered by Steve Batley
    Green Beret
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