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Drip Irrigation

 

Definition

Drip irrigation,also known as trickle irrigation or microirrigation is one of the sub-surface irrigation method of applying water or frequent application of water to crops through small emitters in the vicinity of the root zone, wetting a limited amount of surface area and depth of soil. The theory behind drip irrigation is to apply sufficient moisture to the root of the crops to prevent water stress. A major difference between drip system and most other systems is that the balance between crop evapotranspiration and applied water is maintained over limited periods of 24 to 72 hours. The conversion from sprinkler to drip irrigation can result in water use reduction of 50% and double yield. This is a result of improved water use and fertility and reduced disease and weed pressure.

Need Of Drip Irrigation

Drip irrigation can help you use water efficiently.A well-designed drip irrigation system loses practically no water to runoff, deep percolation, or evaporation. Drip irrigation reduces water contact with crop leaves, stems, and fruit. Thus conditions may be less favorable for the onset of diseases. Irrigation scheduling can be managed precisely to meet crop demands, holding the promise of increased yield and quality.Growers and irrigation professionals often refer to "subsurface drip irrigation,"or SDI. When a drip tape or tube is buried below the soil surface, it is less vulnerable to damage during cultivation or weeding. With SDI, water use efficiency is maximized because there is even less evaporation or runoff.Agricultural chemicals can be applied more efficiently with drip irrigation. Since only the crop root zone is irrigated, nitrogen already in the soil is less subject to leaching losses, and applied fertilizer N can be used more efficiently. In the case of insecticides, less product might be needed.

Components And Working

In drip irrigation, also known as trickle irrigation, water is applied in the form of drops directly near the base of the plant. Water is conveyed through a system of flexible pipelines, operating at low pressure, and is applied to the plants through drip nozzles.  This technique is also known as 'feeding bottle' technique where by the soil is maintained in the most congenital form by keeping the soil-water-air proportions in the optimum range. Drip irrigation limits the water supplied for consumptive use of the plant by maintaining minimum soil moisture, equal to the field capacity, thereby maximizing the saving. The system permits the fine control on the application of moisture and nutrients at stated frequencies.

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