Drip irrigation is a type of irrigation that passes droplets of water in a uniform manner to the root zone of plants. Drip irrigation is one of the most effective and efficient types of irrigation in the world.
Drip irrigation for tomato farming is the application of drip irrigation to the growing of tomato crop. Tomato does well when grown under drip irrigation systems. As a matter of fact, tomato reaches their peak yield level when drip irrigation is used.
In Nigeria, tomato farmers are now embracing the use of drip irrigation for the cultivation of tomato due to its advantages over other types of irrigation.
Steps to take to use drip irrigation for tomato farming
The following steps need to be taken for you to use drip irrigation for tomato farming:
Prepare the farmland
The farmland to be used for tomato farming must be prepared. Farm preparation includes bush clearing, plowing, harrowing and ridging. Unwanted trees, weeds and stumps should be removed from the farmland.
Without land preparation, the drip irrigation system cannot be installed on the farmland. For subsurface drip irrigation system, there will be some diggings on the farmland.
Buy the drip irrigation system
The next step after land preparation is for you to buy the drip irrigation system. You should only buy the type of drip irrigation system suitable for tomato farming. Check the components of the drip irrigation system to be sure that they are suitable for the growing of tomato.
Get a source of water
Water is a must for an irrigation system. You should have a source of water for your drip irrigation system. Examples of sources of water are well, borehole, river, stream and dam etc. The water should be clean and free of particles that can damage the drip irrigation system.
Design the drip irrigation layout
You should get an expert to design the drip irrigation layout for your tomato farm. However, if your tomato farm is small, you may not need an expert to do your irrigation design.
Install the drip irrigation system
The drip irrigation system should be installed by experts. However, for small tomato farms, DIY can be done. Gravity drip irrigation system can be easily set up by the farmer himself.
Test the drip irrigation system
After the installation of the drip irrigation system, you should pressurize the drip irrigation tapes with water and check that the emitters drip water as expected. If the drip irrigation system does not work as expected, you may need to check the water pressure and flow or better still, contact an irrigation expert.
Cost of drip irrigation for tomato farming
The cost of drip irrigation for tomato farming for an acre of farmland is ₦200,000 – ₦500,000 depending on the type of drip irrigation system.
The cost of drip irrigation for tomato farming for an hectare of farmland is ₦500,000 – ₦1,250,000 depending on the type of drip irrigation system.
The cost of drip irrigation for tomato farming for 5 acres of farmland is ₦1,000,000 – ₦2,500,000 depending on the type of drip irrigation system.
Do you use drip irrigation for tomato farming? If yes, why not share your experiences in the comments’ section.
Read our latest article on drip irrigation for maize farming here.