With over 90% irrigation efficacy, the drip irrigation system is the best choice for irrigating your crops. However, increased yields, healthier, and higher-quality crops are only one side of the coin, as we have a responsibility toward the environment to make eco-friendly steps so that we can continue to grow and harvest healthy foods.
This article will outline the benefits a drip irrigation system provides for the environment and explain how to set up an eco-friendly irrigation system.
Drip irrigation saves not only your resources; it’s environmentally friendly, too.
What Makes Drip Irrigation Eco-Friendly?
Modern drip irrigation fights climate change in several ways. With the growing population and increased needs for food on the one hand and severe droughts and water scarcity, on the other hand, the future needs creative solutions.
1. It Preserves Water and Fertilizers
There’s no runoff by applying water and fertilizers directly to the roots. Minimal water waste is precisely what the world needs at the moment.
The amount of preserved water can roughly translate to 30% of water throughout the season. Drip irrigation fights climate change by helping us maintain water instead of wasting it inefficiently.
Drip irrigation is eco-friendly as it makes every drop of water count.
2. It Produces More Yields
To meet the demands of a growing population, farmers need to increase yields. The best way to do this is by combining irrigation and fertilization. Proper irrigation and fertigation can increase yields five times in a season.
3. It Decreases Plant Disease Levels
Plants get prone to diseases when water and fertilizers reach the leaves instead of the roots. Drip irrigation is eco-friendly and effective because it aims at the plant’s roots.
With fewer diseases, the farmer has fewer costs, resulting in healthier crops and more productive plants.
Set up an Eco-Friendly Irrigation System
Drip irrigation fights climate change by making every drop of water count. While the primary goal of drip irrigation isn’t to save water, this is one of the positive outcomes of eco-friendly drip irrigation systems.
Install Irrigation Sensors
Traditional farming irrigates plants based on years of experience and current weather conditions. Irrigation sensors take this to another level by only irrigating the plant when required, which can be controlled remotely.
Soil-moisture sensors measure the level of moist discs planted in the soil. The owner receives a message when the discs dry that the plants need water.
Water flow sensors measure how much water has gone through the drip irrigation system. In case of rain or a system malfunction, the farmer can skip the next irrigation cycle or fix the system itself.
Ph level sensors have environmental benefits for the environment as they can provide the farmer with helpful answers regarding which fertilizer to use.
Almost all plants require some fertilizer throughout the season. In traditional fertilization, farmers apply fertilizers once a year. Drip irrigation provides the ability to monitor plants’ needs and uses fertilizers when necessary, spreading the nutrients on several occasions (late winter, spring, summer, depending on the nutrient.)
With a drip irrigation system, fertigation has many benefits for the environment. Fertilizers can be poisonous to the environment (and for people and animals if they’re in direct contact with it) if farmers don’t distribute the plant food precisely.
Drip irrigation fertilizers go straight to the roots instead of the leaves or water source. The risk of contaminating other plants, water sources, or adjacent fields is low.
Plants can use more nutritional elements from the fertigation, as they first intake water and fertilizers. The dry roots and soil don`t have a great capacity to intake fertilizers, so a drip irrigation system is a perfect way to combine irrigation and fertilization.
Plants absorb nutrients better when the soil is properly irrigated.
Install Low-Pressure Compensating Emitters
Low-pressure emitters go a step further when it comes to protecting the environment. Applying water and fertilizers with a low-pressure emitter significantly increases the precision of irrigation. The more efficient water application is, the less water goes to waste.
The low-pressure emitters have another eco-friendly advantage. The pumps don’t require so much energy to operate the drip irrigation system.
Low energy consumption leads to lower levels of carbon dioxide release. Carbon dioxide is one of the most significant air pollutants.
Next to decreasing air pollution, low-pressure emitters also reduce the electricity bill. Farmers can provide the best watering conditions to their plants without worrying too much about electricity bills at the end of the month.
Use Drip Irrigation Pipes From Recycled Material
Using recycled materials is the future when it comes to preserving the environment. More and more companies are diligently working towards reusing irrigation waste and no longer functional materials.
Now, more than 20% of these materials can be successfully reused. There`s a strong tendency that these numbers will go higher shortly. Hopefully, farmers will have the option to obtain completely recycled drip irrigation pipes soon.
Implement Rain Barrels for an Eco-Friendlier Approach
Water is a precious element, and the time has come when we need to use it carefully. Implementing rain barrels is a perfect way to preserve water while obtaining the best irrigation results.
Rain barrels are an excellent solution for both smaller and larger farms. One larger barrel can store up to 600 liters of water. Farmers can purchase several barrels or use specialized barrels that can store even more water.
A rain collector is a hose that collects rain and leads the water directly into the barrel. Farmers can place a lid on the barrel, protecting the water from leaves or unnecessary debris.
A Smart Drip Irrigation System Reduces the Need for Labor and Fuel
Smart irrigation systems do not require farmers to monitor them constantly. With a proper irrigation system, irrigation sensors, and a controller, the farmer can make an informed decision about irrigation without visiting the farm.
Lower fuel costs, less workforce, and more free time to spend on improving other aspects of the farm lead to a healthier environment.
Contact us if you want to fight climate change with us and enjoy the benefits of an eco-friendly drip irrigation system.