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Advantages and Disadvantages of Drip Irrigation for your Land - The one sure thing is that your land needs irrigation to maintain the health of grass, plants and trees. So we encourage farmers to plan for watering as part of their overall maintenance program. For the methods of irrigation in the land, there's no better way to direct H2O straight to the source (plant roots, water conservation is one benefit of drip irrigation). There are advantages and disadvantages of drip irrigation, as well as  maintenance concerns that you should know about before you make a decision. Drip irrigation or in another termed as localized irrigation is one of the methods of irrigation that saves water and fertilizer. In drip irrigation method, water drips slowly to the root zone of the plants in precise amounts either onto the soil surface or directly onto the root zone through a network of valves, pipes, tubing and emitters. The process is completed in narrow tubes so that water is given directly to the root of the plant at controlled frequencies.

See Also: Advantages and Disadvantages of Furrow Irrigation

Here, we’ll explain the advantages and disadvantages of drip irrigation so you can determine if this watering solution is a fit for your land.

Advantages — Drip Irrigation 

  • Conserves Water

The characteristic of drip irrigation is the maximum use of available water because of controlled delivery of water directly to the root zone. Drip irrigation systems consist of tubing through which water travels from its source to drip emitters (also called micro irrigation).

  • Easy Installation

Localized irrigation installation does not require excavating and rarely destroy the integrity of a land bed during installation. Tubing is weaved throughout the area requiring watering. Therefore, drip irrigation systems can be moved and are not permanent like conventional irrigation systems (involving spray-heads, pop-up heads, etc.).

  • No runoff of fertilizers into ground water

With drip irrigation, water is delivered directly to the ground’s surface rather than being sprayed up and out over an area. There aren't surface runoff of pesticides, fertilizers and manure, or leaching of nitrogen into groundwater,

  • No Drift

Drip irrigation can deliver 1 to 4 gallons of water per hour directly to your plants, and there is no drift, which is what happens when wind carries water dispersed from an irrigation system to areas that do not need water like sidewalks, walkways, or driveways.

Disadvantages — Drip Irrigation 

  • Can Be High-Maintenance

In spite of the fact that there are many benefits to drip irrigation, and it may be the ideal solution for your lands beds and groundcover areas, they're a certain limitation also. That said, it's important to note that these systems so require more maintenance considerations you should know about before having a system installed. Primarily, these systems require more regular maintenance and you will need to monitor the system to ensure that it's working properly.

The most serious problem in drip irrigation namely clogging of emitters, so you will require system flush-outs on at least a monthly basis, and more depending on the type of water that’s flowing through the tubing. Non-potable water contains more particles and can more easily clog filters and drip emitters. Emitter plugging can severely hamper water application uniformity. And no matter what type of water you’re using to water your property, the nozzles on drip emitters must be cleaned out sometimes weekly.