Source: Texas A&M AgriLife Research & Extension Center at Dallas
The cycle and soak method of applying water to the landscape drastically reduces and in some cases eliminates runoff.
This method of applying water to the landscape is made up of multiple cycles for each station with 30 to 60 minute for the water to soak into the soil between cycles.
- The first cycle will break the surface tension of the soil and saturate the top layer of soil.
- The second cycle infiltrates the soil more efficiently and deeply after the first cycle.
- A third, and sometimes a fourth cycle, is beneficial if a slope is involved or if runoff occurs after the sprinklers run for just a few minutes.
For example: if you have determined you need to run a sprinkler station 12 minutes, schedule your controller run the station 2 times for 6 minutes, or 3 cycles for 4 minute. If a slope or runoff is involved, run the station 4 cycles 3 minutes.