Irrigation is the method of watering the plants in a field by making use of the watering systems. All the areas in a country cannot receive uniform rainfall throughout the year. That is why irrigation systems are required for watering the plants in the months that receive low rainfall.
Today the irrigation systems are developed to function continuously for hours eliminating the need for manual watering. The latest irrigation systems allow the farmers to water the plants any time of the year according to their requirements. This post shares some of the best types of irrigation systems used today.
Drip irrigation is known as the most efficient watering system available today. It sprays the water near the roots of the plants in a dripping motion. The drip irrigation method helps reduce the potential loss of water through evaporation and run-off.
Drip irrigation method uses a network of tubes and rows. A low-pressure pump pushes the water through them, and the water comes out in the drip motion close to the roots of plants. The drip systems have a long life of 10 to 12 years before you need to replace them.
Sprinkler irrigation systems make use of sprinkler devices that spray the water like rain droplets. The sprinkler systems can be set temporarily or permanently in the fields. The high-pressure sprinkler devices spray the water in the form of droplets directly over the plants.
Users can control the amount of water that they need for watering the plants. Moreover, there are movable sprinkler systems that can be moved across the fields to have more controlled irrigation. The moving sprinkler systems are usually mounted on the pipelines and booms that are movable across an area.
The micro sprinkler systems are the most water-efficient irrigation systems available today. Similar to the drip irrigation systems, they spray the water very close to the roots of the plants. The sprinklers are smaller in size and spray a very fine spray of mist on the target area.
The micro sprinkler systems are best to use in the area with fewer water resources. Both the drip irrigation and micro sprinkler systems are categorized under the micro irrigation systems.
Rotary irrigation systems are the most commonly used for watering of lawns and gardens. They are suitable for watering the large areas as a single sprinkler can cover an area up to 100 square feet. The sprinkler device sprays the water in a rotating motion to cover all the surrounding area within its range.
Rotary systems need fewer sprinklers as they cover larger areas as compared to other devices. They are the most cost-effective and efficient system of watering the lawns, fields and golf courses. However, you need proper pressure from the water supply, to ensure the adequate rotation of the sprinkler device.
Center Pivot irrigation
These systems are the overhead irrigation systems that spray the water from a certain height. They are made of steel, or aluminum pipes joined together and mounted on wheeled towers. One end of the system is static, and other end moves along a circle.
The sprinklers are mounted along the length of the main pipe that moves in a circular motion. These systems are best of the square or circularly shaped fields. Users can install additional nozzles at the free end to cover some more area on the field.
Linear moving irrigation systems
The linear irrigation systems move in a straight line across a field. These systems are capable of watering multiple rows simultaneously in a field. Users can control the linear irrigation systems using a cable or GPS. The GPS enabled systems are much expensive than the cable-controlled systems. However, the linear irrigation systems need a fairly leveled land to function properly.
Permanent irrigation systems
As the name suggests, the permanent irrigation systems are fixed permanently in the fields. The water pipes are fixed under the soil and work well for the locations that are usually dry and receive a low amount of rainfall. The main drawback of these systems is that they cannot be removed which makes it difficult to plow the fields.
The irrigation systems today are much sophisticated and developed these days. All the methods mentioned in this post are the top irrigation systems that save water as well as energy. What a farmer choose for irrigation depends on the type of landscape and the watering requirements.
Drip irrigation systems are the most efficient but quite expensive. The option that users choose also depends on the money they are willing to spend on buying the systems. Countries across the world are adopting the sprinkler irrigation systems for conservation of water, energy, and soil. Some farmers use a combination of irrigation systems to reduce the losses due to evaporation and runoff.