I'm moving from soaker hoses to T-tapes. I think they'll last longer for me and I want more even coverage. I've wandered through the previous threads and haven't seem anything about using T-tapes with the plastic/paper mulches. In the past I've used the soaker hoses and use them to make straight lines to plant along. Then I started using the thin plastic-type mulch with the soaker hoses underneath but I couldn't easily use the hoses as line guides. Also, it was difficult to check for even coverage, etc. This year I'm starting out with one bed of T-tapes to see if I like them better (Dripworks says I will--but then again they are selling the stuff!). I also want to try out the brown or green mulch. T-tapes over the top of the brown/green plastic mulch or under?
We use green plastic mulch. Our mulch layer lays the T-tape under the plastic at the same time.
As for coverage, T-tape can't be beat. We have it all hooked in zones. 300 ft rows, usually 3 runs of T-tape to a zone. Our tape is hooked to our well with 50 lbs of pressure. So we have plenty of flow even 1000 ft away from the well. We run a zone of tape for about 3 hours to get enough water. Once under the plastic the water keeps it moist for a number of days.
We use a 2" diameter lay-flat hose across the end of the rows. Then the T-tape is hooked that. A garden hose with a faucet is hooked to the lay-flat. That way you can regulate the pressure. We just set the pressure by trial & error. Works better than a gauge.
We use about 10,000 ft of plastic mulch every year. T-tape is put under most of it, (not for watermelons.) T-tape is there even if we don't use it.
We use new T-tape every year. It's only $185 for a roll big enough to do the whole garden. We figure it's a small investment to assure nothing will dry out.
We didn't use much last year. We can get enough rain here to do the job. This was a little more than we needed!
Our garden is to the right of the road.