Why Do You Need a Drip Irrigation System?
Have you noticed the global climate change? Of course, you have. Everybody has noticed the drought conditions, water shortages, and water restrictions. There are various regions in Kenya that continue to face drought, while, others are coming up. Farmers have felt this impact, and they can no longer rely on the former rain patterns to plant and expect good produce. You may end up losing all your crops in the field because times have changed.
This adversity has led to people resulting in irrigation to ensure that plants get adequate water to grow and produce a healthy harvest. Current technological advancements have brought rise to many irrigation techniques, and each works differently from the other. Kenyan farmers used to rely on overhead irrigation, but they later realized that this method not only wets the plants but also produces runoff. That’s where most switched to drip irrigation because it is a more controlled irrigation technique. Consequently, you’ll find drip irrigation systems for sale in Kenya to water your crops.
What is drip irrigation?
Drip irrigation is a kind of micro-irrigation system that delivers water slowly at a low pressure near or at the root zone of the plants. This method of irrigation allows you to target a specific area where you want to irrigate. The drip irrigation system could be buried under the surface, and they could also deliver water from above the soil surface.
The main reason for placing the system near the root zone is to minimize evaporation. This method of irrigation could deliver water to your plants via a network of pipes, valves, emitters, and tubing. Drip irrigation systems have gained immense popularity among Kenya farmers because they are considered more efficient than other irrigation methods.
However, to achieve maximum results, you have to ensure that your drip irrigation system is installed properly. You also have to ensure that you maintain it properly. You can research the market to get drip irrigation systems for sale in Kenya that feature a functional design to help you irrigate your land properly.
Where should you use a drip irrigation system?
A drip irrigation system can be applied to various areas including hard-to-water areas, flower gardens, shrub beds, and non-turf areas. It also works effectively in areas that have mixed plantings, high traffic areas, plus areas where they experience a lot of winds. This system can be used in all these areas because you can position it to distribute water to areas that you want.
Interestingly, drip irrigation systems for sale in Kenya can be used in both residential and commercial settings. Get yours to enjoy the benefits that it presents to your plants.
However, you must also keep in mind that drip irrigation is suitable for certain types of crops, particularly those that are grown in rows. You can also use this system on vine and tree crops, but these require you to provide one or more emitters for every plant. Moreover, the cost of installing a drip irrigation system is relatively high, and that’s why it’s mainly used on high-value crops.
The drip irrigation system you get can also adjust to the slope of your farmland; therefore, you need not worry about the gradient of your farm. You can use this irrigation method to improve your crops. Additionally, drip irrigation works for most soils, but if you are applying it on clay soils, you have to do it slowly to avoid water runoff. Whereas, if you have to apply it on sandy soils, you must ensure that the drip irrigation systems for sale in Kenya that you get have higher discharge rates.
When using a drip irrigation system, you may encounter some blockage problems. All the emitters of this system have relatively small waterways that range from 0.2 to 2.0 mm in diameter. If you happen to use water that’s not clean, then these emitters get blocked. That’s why it’s recommended that you use clean water for your drip irrigation system.
However, if you cannot use clean water, then you need to carry out a filtration process. Saline water could work well too. This irrigation method is preferred because of its efficiency in water use. That means that you can use it on your farm even when the water is scarce.
Do note that blockages may also occur as a result of dissolved chemicals, fertilizer deposits, or when the water contains some algae. A good filtration process might solve this issue, but for complex situations, you may need to consult with a professional engineer or your dealer to help you solve the issue.
Reasons for getting a drip irrigation system
There are a couple of reasons for getting a drip irrigation system over other types of irrigation systems. Here are some of the major reasons.
i. Water efficiency
One of the key reasons as to why you need to look for drip irrigation systems for sale in Kenya to install in your farmland is because of water efficiency. The system ensures that water seeps into the soil one drop at a time. Besides, the water is delivered directly to the root zone of the plants.
The slow seepage ensures that no water is lost to the atmosphere through evaporation. Moreover, the slow rate sees that the water doesn’t run off into other directions. That way, you will only irrigate the plants you intend to. Some of those that have installed this type of irrigation system claim that this method can save from 30 to 70 percent of water compared to other methods of irrigation.
Overall, this method will serve Kenyan farmers very well, considering that we are experiencing drought and water shortages.
ii. Lower costs
Undoubtedly, nobody wants to incur hefty water bills. You don’t want your bills to range into the tens of thousands every month. Such a bill is not only too high but also stressful. The amount of water that you’ll use to irrigate will depend on the landscape and area that you are irrigating. That means that different Kenyan farmers will pay different bills regardless of using a drip irrigation system.
However, the fact remains that if you use a drip irrigation system, you will pay lower water bills because you use less water. Hence, why not go ahead to install a drip irrigation system instead of using other traditional techniques to irrigate your farmland or flower garden.
iii. You get healthier plants
Nothing gets as disappointing to a farmer than getting low harvests every season. This is a situation that has been experienced by most Kenyan farmers ever since the drastic climate change. However, farmers who had installed drip irrigation systems had a steady flow of the harvest throughout the year.
Normally, plants that get watered by a drip system are more productive, plus they grow much faster. The irrigation system makes this possible because your crops are supplied with the water they need to achieve optimum growth.
Moreover, you will hardly forget to water your plants because drip irrigation delivers water to specific plants at a certain rate. Your crops will also grow healthier because such systems avoid fungal diseases from getting to your plants. Such diseases affect your plants when your plants grow under extremely moist conditions.
iv. It helps you save time
Time is money, and any time that we waste can never be recovered. That’s why people prefer an item that can help them save some time over one that wastes their time. Interestingly, a drip irrigation system can help you save a lot of time compared to other irrigation methods. How so? Well, this irrigation system does not require you to set up hoses, timers, and rotate the hoses or pipes.
Once you install this irrigation system in your farm or garden, it will water your plants by itself. You don’t need to set it up every time. That notwithstanding, all that’s required of you is to turn the system on and off. Alternatively, you can invest in a system that comes with a timer. Such a system requires you to spend a few seconds to turn it on, and it will shut off automatically based on the time that you’ve set.
v. Reduces the growth of weeds
Weeds are a nuisance in farms and gardens. They not only drain the nutrients that your plants need but also affect the aesthetic value of your farm or garden. Fortunately, a drip irrigation system minimizes the occurrence of weeds on your farmland. How is this possible? Well, a drip irrigation system delivers water directly to your target plants. That means that less water is wasted on weeds because the soil between each plant remains relatively dry.
vi. Easy installation
You can get a professional to install your drip system for you for the most effective results, but the task is quite fast and seamless. Most systems will get installed along the soil surface, meaning that your plants’ root systems will not get affected.
If you wish to move the drip irrigation system from one point of the farm to another, you can move it easily to irrigate the area that needs to be irrigated.
vii. There’s no wind interruption
Sometimes, it gets draughty, and if you are using an overhead sprinkler to water your farm or garden, then your watering attempts will be ineffective because the water will get swayed to an unintended direction. However, this is something that you will never experience when using a drip irrigation system. It maximizes the efficiency of each drop of water on your plants because the irrigation lines lie directly on the soil.
Other reasons as to why you may consider using this system to water your plants include:
- You can use fertilizers with high efficiency
- Soil erosion does not occur
- You can use recycled water
- You can use this system on irregularly-shaped landscapes
- Leveling the field is not a necessity
Disadvantages of drip irrigation systems
As you look to get the ideal drip irrigation systems for sale in Kenya, you must also know that they have their drawbacks. These shortcomings may not outweigh the advantages, but you cannot ignore them. They include:
- A lot of skill is required to operate this irrigation system
- May have salinity problems
- The emitters could get clogged
- The initial cost is relatively high
- The sun could affect the tubes and piping used in drip irrigation
How does a drip irrigation system work
A drip irrigation system is an effective watering system that works in its own unique way to ensure that plants receive adequate water to grow healthy. The system works by exposing the plants’ roots to a direct supply of water. The process is achieved through drip emitters, which release water in slow motion.
These emitters are small, and they are placed on the ground, and you are supposed to arrange them in rows. You will then need to connect the emitters to a water source through a hose. Alternatively, you could look for drip irrigation systems for sale in Kenya that feature hoses that have built-in drip emitters.
A drip irrigation system is designed to work with precision. The amount of water that a drip system releases is measured in gallons per hour, ensuring that it gets released at a slow rate. The slow rate guarantees that your plants will receive the amount of water they deserve. However, to achieve this, you have to make sure that your drip irrigation system is properly installed and you also need to maintain it to prevent wasting water.
If you are looking for an efficient way to irrigate your farm or flower garden that will minimize water wastage in this tough climatic conditions in Kenya, look no further than a drip irrigation system. You will find a myriad of drip irrigation systems for sale in Kenya that you can install in your farmland. Such systems are designed to deliver water efficiency, plus they help lower your water bill costs. They deliver water to the target plants, and they do so at a very slow rate.