Irrigation Management

Irrigation System Upgrade Opportunities

Have you completed an Environmental Farm Plan? If so, the next step may be to create an Irrigation Management Plan with potential access to cost-share support.

Operations Recommendations

Key drought management tips
  • reducing irrigated acreage
  • delaying irrigation for critical stages
  • retaining crop residues for better water capture
  • scheduling irrigation
Irrigation water-saving tips 
  • use the right equipment for the type of crop
  • correct operation considerations
  • monitoring soil moisture
  • understanding late summer water requirements for various crops
Irrigation decisions with limited water 
  • irrigating a portion of acreage fully will produce as much total yield as irrigating the full acreage partially and can reduce overhead costs as well
 Irrigation tips to conserve water on the farm 
  • repair leaks in the irrigation system
  • select more efficient irrigation systems
  • apply only as much water as you need
  • use soil moisture monitoring devices and climate information
  • avoid irrigation during hot and windy periods
drip irrigation.jpg
Irrigation Scheduling Tools
*** not for emergency measures during a drought
(useful for longer term adaptation to manage water in advance of a drought)
 Irrigation Calculator User Guides
  • sprinklers
  • drip
  • pivot
  • traveling gun
  • stationary gun
Irrigation Calculator

Irrigation Scheduling Techniques
Irrigation scheduling techniques 
  • soil moisture measurement
  • hand feel method
  • tensiometers
  • collecting meteorological data
Sprinkler irrigation scheduling using a water budget method
  • determining soil water content
  • determining effective precipitation
  • determining net depth of irrigation water applied
  • determining crop evapotranspiration
  • calculating water balance
 Determining Evapotranspiration with Evaporation Pans 
  • evaporation pans
  • rain gauges
  • appropriate locations
Manual Rain Gauge.jpg