Agricultural Irrigation

Agricultural Production Agricultural Irrigation

Agricultural Irrigation

Agricultural water users can optimize water use efficiency and protect the quality of water resources by applying basic information about irrigation systems, crop water use and management practices.

Determining Crop Water Use

Do you know how much water your crop is using on a daily basis?  When I ask this question most guys tell me somewhere between 0.20 - 0.40 inches per day.  Sometimes they are close but wouldn’t it be nice to know for sure?  It is rather simple to figure out if you have the right tools.

 An atmometer, such as the ETgage®, is what you need to calculate reference ET.  ET stands for evapotranspiration.  This is the amount of water evaporated from the soil and plant surface and transpired through the plant.

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Is Manure Irrigation Risky Business?

Because of a growing concern about manure irrigation, the University of Wisconsin Extension assembled a workgroup to research the concerns. The workgroup included scientists, public health specialists, state agency experts, farmers, conservationists and others. Over the course of two years, the group gathered and studied the science of manure irrigation, which culminated in a report that contains findings, responses and recommendations. This article will review a few of their findings related to bacterial transport as well as highlight some of the reasons why a farmer might opt to apply manure via irrigation rather than other ways.

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So What Are We Actually Measuring

When properly calibrated, soil water sensors can give irrigators an accurate measurement of how much water is currently available, and how much has been depleted, in the soil for the crop. When used along with weather data and crop water use data, this accurate measurement of soil water can help irrigators make a more informed decision on when irrigation should start, how much to apply, and when to quit irrigating. When looking at sensors, be sure to have an understanding of soil water content and how they actually measure soil water. 

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CropWater App

The UNL CropWater App. A handy tool for irrigators to use in the field to aid in irrigation scheduling.

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CornSoyWater: An Online App to Aid in Irrigation Management

Traditional irrigation decision-making relies heavily on experience and requires frequent visits to the field. The process is time consuming and labor demanding, while the results are not quantitative and prone to error.

Login page of the CornSoyWater program

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