Drip irrigation techniques are used in a range of crops internationally to deliver high precision and efficiency for water and nutrient applications. In NZ drip is currently only used on a relatively small scale, for permanent horticulture, but we do not know the drivers for its use, or conversely why it is not used more? Understanding the barriers and issues to drip forms a critical component of ongoing industry efforts to increase water and nutrient use efficiency in cropping systems.
The Drip Irrigation for Vegetable Production resource book introduces drip irrigation as an option for New Zealand vegetable growers. Its aims include -
- presenting an overview of drip irrigation
- describing the technologies involved
- explaining key concepts that support successful drip irrigation, and
- highlighting key issues to consider and questions to ask.
It provides sufficient base information for a grower to decide whether to further investigate the use of drip irrigation for their vegetable production operations.
While it has been prepared with vegetable growers in mind, the information is also of interest to growers of arable crops and pastures.
When considering any irrigation option, soil, crop, climate, farm layout and manager and operator knowledge specific to the farm must be carefully evaluated.
This book does not replace the need for specific, specialist advice, or describe specific component options. It makes no attempt to explain the hydraulic design processes required to engineer a drip irrigation system. That is specialist work, requiring specialist knowledge and experience.