Modern Irrigation Technologies refer to technical and managerial upgrade of schemes and systems that aid delivery of water to farms or simply defined as on-farm irrigation systems.
In an exclusive interview with Mr. Sam Kalu, who is an Agribusiness Consultant. Mr. Sam focuses on Setup, Management and strategic marketing of Horticultural and Plantation crops as well as effective Post –Harvest Handling Practices.
He is also involved in the Design, layout, procurement and setting up Irrigation System and other farm Machinery needed for smooth running of farms and youth development in Agribusiness.
Read Below to find out the opportunities in Modern Irrigation that African Youth Can seize.
Crops need for water cannot be overemphasized. Water is basically one of the major input essential for crop production. Water is required for crop growth and its requirement change based on the season and soil type.
Every year in Nigeria and in most parts of sub Saharan Africa after less than 6 months of Rainfall we get to the dry months where solar radiation is scorching and soil water depletes. At this time, farmers who grow crops only during the rainy season drop their farm implements at home and focus on their other trades to continue providing for their families. But this is the time when smart farmers make their money, Why? Because, since few farmers are growing, only those using effective irrigation will have their crops available during this periods and they will sure reap immense benefits.
However, there lie the big questions: What irrigation options are available? What Irrigation options is suitable for the crop I hope to grow in the dry season? What opportunities are there for Young ones who will like to go into this business?
In this article, I will focus on 3 main type of Irrigation that are bound to increase your yields and profits in the dry season.
As their names implies, they rotates 360 degrees and sprinkle water as they do! They are of different types and capacity, while smaller ones can cover less land diameter some can cover up to 1 hectare per time if a big industrial pump of 10 to 12Hp is used.
What is the advantages of Sprinklers?
*It plays the role of Nitrogen fixation. One of the major nutrient plant requires is Nitrogen. Atmospheric air contains 78% of nitrogen. As the Rain Gun resembles Rain, the water dissolves the nitrogen from air and gives it to soil, thereby adding nutritive value to soil. This is one of the reasons for increase in yield.
* Reduces pest and insects attack: Pests and insects get washed away when using this irrigation.
* Less Cost: It is cheaper to irrigate a larger area of land with sprinklers than with other irrigation systems.
* Less Maintenance.
Crops that support Sprinklers: Plantation crops(Plantain, Pineapple, Oil Palm, Rubber, e.t.c), Indigenous vegies: Ugu, Shoko, Tete, Ewedu, Water Leaf, Bitter Leaf, Afang or water loving exotic vegetables like Lettuce and all leafy vegetables.
2. Spray Tubes
Another Irrigation method we will be talking about are Spray tubes. This are flexible flat hose perforated at strategic points so that when pressured water pass through them the water will gush out from those holes in a uniform way on both sides. They have a jet length, coverage area of about 4m average (2m to the left and 2m to the right) and that means that a 1000m length of spray tubes will be sufficient to irrigate 1 acre. They do not necessarily need a high powered pump, however depending on the size of the land you can power with a 5m high overhead tank or pump water directly from a borehole ,Well or a water body using a mud pump.
Crops that support Spray tubes: Plantation crops(Plantain, Pineapple, Oil Palm, Rubber, e.t.c), Indigenous vegies: Ugu, Shoko, Tete, Ewedu, Water Leaf, Bitter Leaf, Afang or water loving exotic vegetables like Lettuce, Water Melon, Cucumbers(staked), and all leafy vegetables.
3. Drip Irrigation System
This is by far the most effective irrigation system for exotic vegetables most of which do not like water to stay long on their leaf like tomato, some species of cucumbers and others. However, most farmers refuse to use this type of irrigation due to its initial investment cost.
There are basically 2 types of drip Irrigation systems: The first is factory perforated drip system, this ones have a defined spacing say 30cm or 50cm between one drip emitter and the other.
The second however consist of an unperforated drip line and you have to use a puncher to make holes and connect an emitter to the holes-this method is used majorly for plantation crops that requires much water like plantains as shown in the picture below…One hectare of irrigation materials and installation of this system costs N849,900 only.
Advantage of Drip Irrigation
*High water efficiency: Drip irrigation is highly effective at supplying few liters of water per hour directly to the soil.
* The advantage other of drip irrigation over other irrigation types is that there is little water loss due to evaporation or runoff.
Crops that support Drip Irrigation: Plantation crops(Plantain, Pineapple, Oil Palm, Rubber, e.t.c), Indigenous vegies: Ugu, Shoko, Tete, Ewedu, Water Leaf, Bitter Leaf, Afang , Maize, Cassava, exotic vegetables like Lettuce, Water Melon, Cucumbers, e.t.c
How can Young People get involved in this business?
There 3 identified ways Young People can make money from this business-
- Young people can get involved in this business by promoting the benefits of irrigation farming to farmers around them, either by starting irrigation farming on small scale themselves and inviting farmers and farmer groups around them to see the yield potential of using irrigation or convincing one person to do the irrigation on their farm and use that person as a success story for others.
- Another business opportunity is to buy and resell the irrigation systems or their accessories to others, if you can build their trust to send you money in advance you can buy from other sellers and make money from the margin between the price you bought it and logistics to the farmer and the price you sell it to them.
- Another way to make money is through installation of drip systems to people who (1) Already have drip systems and (2) You have procured the drip system for. This is an extra way to make money, however this requires training and constant practice to be able to handle major projects.
Interested in Modern Irrigation Technologies?
We procure, resell, design, install and train young people on how to make money from reselling and installation of irrigation systems.
Please call/WhatsApp +2347036931636 or visit: www.agritechnovate.com for details. 3�x�;��>��