The limitation of drip irrigation
The drip irrigation has the following limitation:
- 1 Higher initial cost can be more than overhead systems
- 2 Durability of the components
- 3 Plant Performance: Studies indicate that most plants grow better when leaves are wetted as well
- 4 Poor system and crop performance if system not designed properly
- 5 Skilled persons are required to operate and maintain the drip system
- 6 Regular maintenance is required
- 7 Power source is required for operation of the system and automation except for the systems operated with gravity
- 8 Susceptible to crop damage in case of system failure for more than 3-5 days
- 9 Micro climate can not be controlled.
Figure 3 : Moisture availability to crop with different irrigation methods.
Moisture availability to crop
More than 80% of worlds irrigated land is under surface irrigation methods, yet its field level application efficiency is often only 40-50%. In contrast micro irrigation may achieve field level application efficiency of 80-90%, as surface runoff and deep percolation losses are minimized (Heerman et al., 1990 and Postel, 2000). The moisture availability to crop under different irrigation methods has been depicted in Figure 3.
Moisture availability to the crop through drip irrigation remains near to the field capacity and nearly uniform as compared with sprinkler and surface irrigation methods, which imposes less stress to the plants and results higher crop yield.