What is Fertigation?
Fertigation is the delivery of readily available nutrients and conditioners to the crop via irrigation systems to efficiently maximise yield.
WHAT ARE THE MAIN BENEFITS OF FERTIGATION?
Fertigation allows greater control over where and when nutrients are delivered to your crop to optimise plant growth.
- Applies fertililser directly to the root zone, increasing nutrient absorption by the plants
- Allows smaller doses more frequently
- Allows application of nutrients at any time, as your crop needs it.
SAVES TIME & LABOUR
Fertigation leverages your irrigation system and means your don’t have to spend the time and money separately fertilising and irrigating.
- With less time on the tractor, you can save on fuel and labour as well as improve farm productivity.
SAVES ON FERTILISER COSTS
Conventional fertiliser application methods are not very efficient. Fertigation helps you get more growth from less fertiliser.
REDUCES SOIL COMPACTION
Reduces the need for surface traffic movement during irrigation and nutrient application to help to reduce soil
MINIMISES NEGATIVE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS
- Reduces fertiliser loss and leeching into the water table
- Reduces water usage due to the plant’s increased root mass
To maximise the benefits of fertigation, careful selection of fertiliser and injection equipment is important. We recommend talking with your local agronomist to work out your fertiliser needs. See our range of accurate, easy to install and easy to use fertigation pumps and systems here or contact us today.
For more background on fertigation and the benefits to crop yield, read an article by our agronomist: ‘Fertigation: Breaking Down Misconceptions.’
WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW TO START FERTIGATING?
Just as you would for traditional fertiliser application methods:
- A good understanding of the plant growth behaviour of your crop; your soil chemistry; and your water quality, leading to an understanding of your nutrient requirements
In addition, when using fertigation,
- A good understanding of the performance of your irrigation system:
The age and condition of your irrigating system can impact its efficiency and uniformity and this will translate to your fertiliser application through fertigation. Understanding this performance ensures more accurate fertiliser application. There are tests that can be performed to better understand your irrigation system’s performance and design capacity. Your local irrigation shop, consultant or industry body can perform these tests.
- An understanding of fertiliser chemistry:
Not all fertilisers are compatible, and mixing can be destructive to your equipment and dangerous to you. In order to fertigate, your fertiliser must be in liquid form. We recommend liquid fertilisers however, water soluble fertilisers that you store dry and mix on farm can also be used.Your fertiliser supplier in consultation with an agronomist will ensure you have the right nutrients in the correct quantities.
- What to look for when buying fertiliser injection equipment:
Not all fertigation systems are equal. The key components are the pump and the controller.
There are many types of pumps on the market: venturi, diaphragm, and plunger – but when accuracy, repeatability and reliability are paramount, it’s plunger pumps that really deliver. Other considerations when reviewing fertigation equipment include ease of use, ease of maintenance, portability and quality of design and manufacture.The best controllers allow you to easily adjust flows either remotely or locally, while the pump is operating. Depending on your current set-up, it may also be important to see how well they electronically integrate into larger farm control systems.
All EcoDose fertigation pumps are positive displacement plunger type pumps. They deliver precise fertiliser dosing control with variable speed Brushless Motor Technology. Available in AC (single and three phase); Solar DC; and other DC input versions, we will have you covered whether you have power in your paddock or not.