Drip irrigation is an irrigation method that saves water and fertilizer by allowing water to drip slowly to the roots of plants, either onto the soil surface or directly onto the root zone, through a network of valves, pipes, tubing, and emitters. It is done through narrow tubes that deliver water directly to the base of the plant.
Drip irrigation advantages are:
- Fertilizer and nutrient loss is minimized due to localized application and
- Water application efficiency is high if managed correctly
- Field leveling is not necessary and can be used on slope.
- Moisture within the root zone can be maintained at field capacity.
- Soil type plays less important role in frequency of irrigation.
- Soil erosion is lessened.
- Weed growth is lessened.
- Water distribution is highly uniform, controlled by output of each Nozzle and not effected by wind or temperature.
- Labor cost is less than other irrigation methods.
- Variation in supply can be regulated by regulating the valves and drippers.
- Fertigation can easily be included with minimal waste of fertilizers.
- Foliage remains dry, reducing the risk of disease.
- Usually operated at lower pressure than other types of pressurized irrigation, reducing energy costs and it can work by gravity.