As a farmer, you need water to grow fruits and achieve the optimum performance of the trees. Rainwater is the most common source of irrigation for fruit trees, and harvesting it is an excellent way to cut costs for your fruit farming project. It’s an effective way to ensure a steady water supply for your trees. With the increasing effects of climate change, you need to devise innovative ways to use scarce resources to maximize fruit production. Rainwater allows you to keep your trees lush and green and enhances your agroforestry goals.
Harvesting rainwater from the roofs, trenches, and surfaces goes beyond placing containers under the gutters.
Here are five tips to help you get the most out of this practice:
Hire a professional to install your efficient water storage and irrigation system. This can save you time and resources in the long run since you will be working with an experienced team. They will ensure that you use the right equipment and set up your system correctly.
Find a site with good drainage if possible. Fruit trees need well-drained soil, so you’ll have to factor this into your planning. The site selected should be conducive for fruit production and close to your water storage area.
Diverting water from rooftops
Diverting rainwater from rooftops and other surfaces is one of the simplest ways to harvest rainwater for fruit farming. It involves using gutters and other tools to divert water to the desired storage area. You can do this using water pipes or directing the water to a pond or dam. However, you need to filter out debris to keep the water clean and contamination-free.
Collecting rainfall water
You can build a simple rainwater collection system on your property by installing downspouts from your gutters into storage tanks. The storage tanks should be large enough to store large water volumes for irrigation use during the dry season. Although some trees are drought-tolerant, they need to be watered regularly for optimum growth. Your storage area should be large enough to store enough water to inclement weather and seasonal droughts.
As a farmer, you can store water in:
- Large water storage tanks
Conserve the water
With unpredictable rainfall patterns and weather conditions, farmers need to use efficient water delivery systems to conserve the harvested water. Drip irrigation systems are highly efficient and deliver small amounts of water directly to the plant’s base at regular intervals. Compared to conventional sprinkler irrigation, drip systems reduce water use by more than 30 percent. They deliver water through a complex network of emitters and lines and are easy to install and maintain. Besides, they can be automated to enhance your irrigation efforts.
Maintaining a steady water supply is an integral part of fruit farming. The fruit tree needs it to grow. The farmer needs the water for irrigation. Take advantage of the rains and store enough water for use during the dry season. Whether you are an established farmer or a new one, water harvesting is a strategy that will work for you. Try it out this rainy season.