Drip Irrigation Systems in Ontario
A Practical Design Guide by Experienced Irrigation Experts
Drip irrigation, also called trickle irrigation, micro-irrigation, or low volume irrigation, delivers a slow and steady supply of water directly to the root zone or the soil surface through devices called drippers or drip emitters. Typically, the water drips at a rate of 0.2 GPH - 10 GPH (gallons per hour). The increased focus on water conservation and sustainable irrigation practices makes drip irrigation one of the most efficient irrigation systems for owners and managers of farms, orchards and commercial properties across Ontario.
The irrigation and water management (IWM) experts at Vanden Bussche Irrigation offer a practical guide to drip irrigation systems.
Save Time, Effort, Water, and Money with Drip Irrigation
As low-pressure, low-volume systems, drip irrigation or micro-irrigation can help in:
- Reducing watering and pesticides
- Minimizing labour requirements
- Improving the quality and yield of your crops and plants
- Reducing weed growth
- Boosting fertilizer efficiency (since they apply water directly to the root zones)
- Avoid runoff and evaporation (using a series of polyethylene tubing or tape, low to the ground).
Here is a breakdown of drip irrigation systems by their key components.
Water Source Connection: A pumping unit draws water from the source and delivers it to the pipe system.
Filtration: This is critical in a drip irrigation system. Allowing anything but water to get into your distribution pipes or watering devices could cause the entire system to fail. Unfortunately, there is really no way to fix clogged drippers.
Pressure Regulators: To ensure the system is going to operate as it should, water must be regulated to the right pressure for the watering devices to work uniformly.
Fertilizer Injectors: A drip irrigation system not only delivers water right to the roots in the most efficient way possible, but also fertilizer. With the addition of a fertilizer injector, you now have an irrigation system and a fertilizer drip system too.
Water Distribution: Bringing your water to the areas you wish to irrigate requires components, such as drip tubing or micro tubing, swivel adapters, compression fittings, and micro connectors.
Water Devices: For delivering the water to the crop or plants directly, the system needs water devices in the form of drip emitters, sprayers, misters (foggers), along with tubing stakes and risers.
Below are the key steps and considerations in planning a drip irrigation system for your Ontario farming operation or commercial property:
- Drawing up a complete layout of the plant/ crop locations, obstacles (such as buildings, walkways, retaining walls), and site water sources to determine where to lay the mainline drip tubing and its components.
- Deciding between hose bibbs and irrigation valves for the water source connections.
- Identifying the appropriate drip components by grouping the plants or crops by their zones and watering needs.
- Determining the water source flow rate and pressure (typically between 20 to 30 psi).
- Finalizing and programming the watering schedules.
Trusted Drip Irrigation Design and Installation Services in Ontario
At Vanden Bussche Irrigation, we have decades of experience designing and installing drip irrigation systems and other micro-irrigation systems for farms, orchards, and commercial properties across Ontario. Our skilled and qualified technicians can help you address all aspects of micro-irrigation, including the system design and components, as well as potential irrigation challenges on your specific site. We also stock a wide array of high-quality products from renowned global manufacturers.