When you plant maize, every season is a race to higher yields.
When you have a more precise way to control water and nutrient delivery, every season is better than the last one.
Having dry periods during the growing season can cause yield loss and become the difference between a profitable season or a loss. This calls for the need to apply enough water at the right time. The farmer must explore ways to control the crop’s exposure to both water and nutrients.
While traditional irrigation systems like flood and pivot give you some control, they’re also inefficient and less uniform in the way they apply water. This becomes even more evident across different soil types and these traditional irrigation methods are also not relevant to uneven topography or odd shaped fields.
Precision irrigation puts the control in your hands by delivering water and nutrients directly to the root-zone of each plant, in tailormade combinations, according to the plants’ developmental stages. It fits onto any plot, and can be applied to all topographies, field sizes and soil types. You can maintain optimal soil moisture and nutrient levels in all conditions.
If you add digital solutions to your system, you’ll be able to monitor and optimise irrigation and Nutrigation™ in real-time throughout the growing season. Gaindata about every aspect of the field and local climate. Wherever you are, whatever the circumstances are, you can ensure consistently high yield and quality every season -and even bigger profits.
Should I use surface or subsurface drip irrigation?
Subsurface drip irrigation (SDI) systems are most suitable for large-scale maize productions. Compared to surface systems, SDI delivers additional benefits such as lower labour requirements, and operational simplicity. SDI also favour modern tillage practices such as no-till or minimum tillage.
Surface systems are best for small to medium-scale farmers, and for use on extremely sandy soil plots. It is also a great option for plots that are deep-tilled or for plots that are rented where growers would prefer to avoid investments in non-mobile equipment. Bear in mind that while it requires a lower initial investment, it does carry a higher operational cost.
If I have a lot of rainfall, will drip still be a good investment?
Definitely. While having ample rainfall is a huge advantage, rain is rarely timely enough to allow the crop to reach full yield potential. This is even more evident with sandy soils that have a lower water holding capacity. On top of that, drip is also a nutrient delivery system that allows you to nutrigate and control the nutrient levels in your soil in a precise and economic way. Applying all the fertilizer in a single application can be wasteful, especially in rainy conditions that provoke leaching. Splitting nutrient applications throughout the season guarantees that your crop gets what it needs when it needs it. This is what makes drip systems the perfect tool for increasing productivity on previously rainfed plots.
What if I have an uneven topography or irregularly shaped maize field?
Drip irrigation fits all plot shapes and sizes, all soil types and all topographies. You can use pressure compensating dripperlines that maintain the same flowrate across different pressure levels, so every plant in the field gets exactly the same amount of water and nutrients despite elevation changes or large distances from the water source.
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