Design or Get off the Pot

By Frank, Luke | Landscape & Irrigation, March 2006 | Go to article overview

Design or Get off the Pot


Frank, Luke, Landscape & Irrigation


Like most any calling, irrigation design combines nuances of creative art with disciplined, proven science. It is called "style with substance." If you want to make a good living, get your education and training and develop some style. If you're trying to make a few bucks, forward it to a professional and ask a finder's fee.

Don't dabble in irrigation design; you make us all look bad. If established standards aren't followed, even the best products can't properly perform, and manufacturers lose confidence with their customers.

Installation becomes a nightmare when flow and pressure aren't considered for designed system capacity, 50-year-old tree roots won't allow a trencher to pass or utility locates don't identify underground infrastructure that can halt a project in its tracks.

Once the system is in the ground, the maintenance contractor looks incompetent because the usual Band-Aids won't solve ongoing hydraulic issues. The property suffers, water waste is imminent, and the community develops a negative opinion of sprinkler gadgetry that doesn't seem to work and runs finite resources right down the curb.

On the other hand, if you've seen enough to know that it's a world that interests you and one in which you can compete, then by all means get your fundamentals and explore your style. It's a noble path with potentially great rewards.

So why listen to a scribbler about some magical path to professional irrigation design? Because, folks, I design, too--I design messages. And just like the ragged blade of a trencher, my mission is to pierce the crust and alter the innards. It's something I always wanted to do, and interestingly worked in irrigation--within my capacity--to get my training.

I spent my high-school summers repairing irrigation on a 100-year-old golf course (needless to say, I had great job security). I also had a great mentor in the course superintendent, who was a firm believer in irrigation automation and progression. He taught me about flow and pressure; coverage uniformity, pipe sizing, electronic valving; and system integrity. The man was wise beyond his years.

While attending journalism school for my fundamentals I worked at the university golf course, which was converting from an antiquated quick-coupler system to a Rain Bird Maxi system.

So I had my journalism and irrigation training firmly in hand when I started working for a large nursery installing irrigation. I spent the next four years planting sprinkler systems and working newspapers as a beat reporter. The newspaper was great journalism experience, but I didn't like the profession much, so I moved into feature writing for green industry magazines. My dual-track training was beginning to pay off. I then joined a "communications firm" where I created irrigation manuals, brochures, speeches, events, commercials, TV shows, posters, calendars and all manner of collateral materials.

Now I spend my days developing strategic communication plans, working in crisis communications, contacting, pitching and escorting media, extracting trade information from experts in the field, and so forth. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Design or Get off the Pot
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.