Fertigation is an agricultural process that integrates fertilization and irrigation; a fertilizer is added to the irrigation line. Fertigation also gives the farmer the flexibility of incorporating pesticides and fungicides alongside the nutrients. Commercial growers mostly use fertigation. Unlike the traditional fertilization approach, fertigation targets the plants' nutrients deficiency more effectively. It also reduces water usage and prevents soil erosion. Also, the amount of fertilizer used is very minimal.
Many plants need nutrients that are not or are limited in the soil. Fertigation supplies these nutrients to the plant. Among nutrients that you can provide to plant through fertigation are urea, ammonium nitrate, ammonia, mono ammonium, phosphate, diammonium phosphate, and potassium chloride. Fertigation applies the same nutrients to the plant at the same time.
In order to achieve correct fertigation, it is vital to note that it can only be applied to irrigated plants. It is important to first investigate different factors like soil fertility, climatic data, minerals requirement of the plant. This will ensure that you apply the right amount of fertilizer to the plants at the right time.
Fertigation significantly differs from the traditional method of applying fertilizers. Conventional methods of fertilizer application are disadvantageous because they are superficial and inaccurate. The fertilizer does not penetrate the soil properly and is not distributed correctly. Fertigation solves all these challenges. Fertigation distributes nutrients uniformly and gradually in the land. Therefore, every plant will get these products after they have dissolved in water.
Two kind irrigations are best suited for fertigation. The first one is drip irrigation, which is direct to every plant. The other one is called center-pivot irrigation. A farmer only requires a piston pump to inject the fertilizer in the irrigation line. Fertigation will benefit crops that are planted in rows like corn. Fertigation is preferred more in dry places. These places have low moisture content, and the soil is sandy. Fertigation will work best if the site doesn’t hold nitrogen and water for a long time.
Different systems are used in fertigation. The first one is a continuous application where the fertilizer is applied at a constant rate in the irrigation. The amount of fertilizer remains the same regardless of the amount of water being supplied. The second system is called proportional application. Here, the injection rate is proportional to the water rate. Quantitative application, on the other hand, the nutrients applied to depend on the size of the irrigation block. This method allows the control of nutrients applied to the crop. Last, there is a three-stage application. In this process, irrigation starts without fertilizer. Fertigation begins when the ground is wet. The fertigation stops before the end of the irrigation cycle to help flush the remaining fertilizer out of the system.
When doing fertigation, it is necessary to keep the environment in mind. If it is too muddy, the pivot might not run. Therefore fertilizer will not be delivered to the crops. It is vital to start fertigation before the rain to ensure that your plants get the right quantities of nutrients. Get more details here!