Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Flood Preparations and irrigation

Life has taken an unexpected turn here in the last week. The Missouri River is rising rapidly into the yards and homes of countless people who live along her banks. We have customers in Dakota Dunes, Wynstone, South Sioux City and Sloan that are at imminent risk of flooding.

Since last Thursday Galen has had his crew working on flood control rather than on irrigation. They have installed sump pumps, moved hundreds upon hundreds of sandbags and have even hauled furniture. I am proud of these young men, they have worked tirelessly, going far beyond what they signed up to work for this summer! I am absolutely certain this is not how anyone in the area planned to spend their holiday weekend.

Officials have asked that all irrigation at the Dunes and other areas along the river be shut off. We are asking that you not only turn off your controller, but as an added safety please shut off the water to your irrigation as well. A full winterization is not necessary, simply turn the water off in the basement or at the backflow device outside your home and turn the controller to OFF.

If you are pumping from the river or canal systems you will need to remove your pump and move it to higher ground. They are made to move water, but their electrical systems are not waterproof. Even if you have a submersible pump, the sheer volume of water flowing through the area has the capability of snapping off the pump feed line.

I can't imagine the stress of having to move out entire communities in a matter of days. We are thankful that there has been adequate warning. Only time will tell if all the efforts will pay off.

God be with all of you who will feel the direct impact of the flood waters.


Monday, May 23, 2011

Congratulations, Graduates!

At Jensen Sprinkler we get the distinct pleasure of seeing boys grow up to be fine young men. They start off often coming to us in the early years of high school as their first job. Some leave when they start college, and we have had several continue with us throughout their college years. This year we have three graduates among our employees, two from high school and one from college. It is our distinct pleasure to offer congratulations to these young men:

Marshall Tuttle, an employee since 2009,  graduates Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Morningside College. Marshall will have another milestone moment later this summer when he marries his high-school sweetheart, Megan.

Luke Schauer has also been with us since 2009, he graduates from Sergeant Bluff-Luton High School and will be attending Morningside College in the fall. (go Mustangs!)

Chad Pruehs has been with us since the summer between his freshman and sophomore year. Actually, Chad came and asked us for a job when he was still an 8th grader. We told him to wait a year and he did. I can't believe the scrawny kid that showed up here 4 years ago is now several heads taller than either of us and heading off to college. Chad graduated from Sergeant Bluff-Luton High School and will be attending University of Nebraska, Lincoln in the fall.

To these and all the other graduates in our community:

Congratulations! May all your dreams come true!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Even Sprinklers Need a Tune-Up!

A well-tuned sprinkler is much like a well-tuned car.  A car uses less gasoline when it is running at peak efficiency. A properly adjusted and maintained sprinkler will keep your grass and landscape green using less water. To have a well-tuned sprinkler you can't simply turn on the water, set the backflow and walk away. You should walk every zone checking for leaks and damaged heads. Check that your sprinkler heads are all still set in the ground straight. A misaligned head is not watering effectively. Also be on the lookout for debris or landscape growth blocking sprinkler heads.

If you live along one of the busier streets in your area you probably have quite a bit of sand along the front edge of your property from winter street crews. Sand has a way of creating problems for mist heads by clogging nozzles and reducing the effectiveness of their spray. Should this happen, unscrewing the nozzle and cleaning it out with a straight pin usually works. Remember to always make sure the plastic filter screen is in place in the neck of the head before reinstalling the nozzle.

Lastly, check your controller settings. Watering three times per week is common for this time of year. Your yard needs about 1" of precipitation per week. We certainly have had quite a bit of precipitation this spring. If you do not have a rain shut-off  on your system yet, we strongly recommend you have one installed. These cost-effective devices keep your sprinkler from running when mother nature has already taken care of it for you.

Have a super spring! Enjoy the sunshine!