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Irrigation Considerations for Tobacco

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Title: Irrigation Considerations for Tobacco


1
Irrigation Considerations for Tobacco
  • by
  • George Duncan Richard Warner
  • Ext. Agr. Engrs.
  • Biosystems Agr. Engr. Dept.
  • UK Coll. of Agri., Coop. Ext. Service

For presentation at TOBACCO EXPO 2003 Jan. 22,
2003 Lexington KY
2
Considerations
  • Why increasing interest?
  • Meet Quota, Financial Obligations
  • Top Quality, Grade
  • Market Needs, Contract
  • Emergency Bail-out? Or Planned Management?
  • Insurance or Investment?
  • Buy it, Use when disaster Not likely
    profitable
  • Invest wisely manage for profit
  • Frequency of Dry Years
  • Two Locations
  • Possible / Potential Results
  • Data from several studies
  • Systems
  • Big Guns, Travelers, Trickle
  • Costs
  • Annual, Long-term Benefits

3
Its a Fact
  • In dry weather
  • any water applied helps tobacco ever how
    applied..
  • Biggest limitation to Irrigation of Tobacco
    in KY?
  • Source of water!
  • Need to plan for future surface storage! (Ph.
    I ?)
  • If time runs out you dont follow all details
  • Handouts today on web www.bae.uky.edu/ext
    Click on
    Tobacco Equip. Facilities

4
Frequency of dry years, Lexington
5
Frequency of dry years, Bowling Green
6
Irrigation Comparisons UK Spindletop Farm
(1984)
318
145
86
233
7
Irrigation Comparisons UK Spindletop Farm
(1985)
-15
-39
-96
13
8
Irrigation Comparisons UK Spindletop Farm
(1986)
696
338
344
343
9
Irrigation Comparisons UK Spindletop Farm
(1987)
99
213
281
10
Irrigation Comparisons UK Spindletop Farm
(1988)
597
567
198
11
Irrigation Comparisons (4-5 Yr. Avg.) UK
Spindletop Farm
336
140
118
150
2810
2646
2636
2614
2496
12
Irrigation Summary UK Spindletop Farm (1982-88)
(Yr, RainIrrig, Spr., T.row, T.mid)
Yield Increase by Irrigation
13
Irrigation Trials, 2001-2002Anderson Circle
FarmMercer Co.
2998
2941
2843
2070
2271
2254
No. Irr. 6.3rain
No. Irr., 6.3rain
4.8rain,4.5 Irr.
4.8rain,
4.8rain, 7. Irr.
6.3rain3 - 4 Irr.
14
3252
2930
Year 2000 Trials Too much irrigation
especially early in the season can produce a
poor root system and reduce yields..
Non Irrig.
Irrigated
3397
2896
Source G. Palmer,
www.ca.uky.edu/ag/tobacco
Irrigated
Non Irrig.
15
Yr 2001
1024
2711
-456
3735
2255
Non Irrigated
Irrigated
Raised Bed Irrigated
Source G. Palmer,
www.ca.uky.edu/ag/tobacco
16
Burley Irrigation Trials, Highland Rim Exp.
Station, TN
Source J. R. Buchanan,
www.utextension.utk.edu/tobaccoinfo/InformationRes
ources.htm
17
Burley Irrigation Trials, Highland Rim Exp.
Station, TN
988
3259
264
725
3417
171
28
0
2996
423
762
3324
2694
3181
2271
3033
3153
3153
YIELD
2.86
3.90
2.65
0
1.47
4.16
1.46
1.10
R10.71
R4.40
Source J. R. Buchanan,
www.utextension.utk.edu/tobaccoinfo/InformationRes
ources.htm
18
WHEW.
  • Can you guarantee 300-400 Lbs/Ac of yield
    increase every year with Irrigation????
  • 200 Lbs?
  • How much??
  • Lets look at some Systems, Features.
  • Costs, Long term benefits

19
Some useful data for Sprinkler Irrigation
  • Soil Water Holding Capacity Clay 1.8-2.4
    inches/ft of soil Clay-loam 2.0-2.6 Silt-Loam
    2.0-3.0 Sandy Loam 1.2-1.9
  • Infiltration (Application) Rate Clay 0.15
    inch/hour Clay-loam 0.30 Silt-loam
    0.40 Sandy Loam 0.15
  • Suggested reduction rates based on
    slope slope Rate reduction 0 5 0 6
    8 20 9 12 20 13-20 60

20
Movable Pipe Sprinklers
Irregular shape, slope fields Medium
pressure, Hp (40-60 psi) More uniform
coverage Medium cost, used Eq. available
- High labor- Lots of pipe, sprinklers- Wet
soil for moving (use skip row)- Evaporation
losses (25-35)- Foliar disease potential
21
Movable Pipe Sprinkler Layouts
22
Movable Pipe Big Guns
- More uniform shape, slope fields- High
pressure, Hp (80-100 psi)- Wet soil for moving
(use skip row)- Evaporation losses (25-35)-
Foliar disease potential- Corner coverage??
Comparable initial costs Cover larger
area/setting Less labor to move
23
Flexible Hose Traveling Gun
Cover larger rectangular areas Lower labor
More uniform coverage than big guns
- Higher initial cost, maintenance- High
pressure, Hp (80-100 psi)- Field size, slope
limitations- Sod or Skip rows needed-
Evaporation losses (25-35)- Foliar disease
potential
24
Trickle (Drip)
Low pressure Lower labor to operate No
foliar wetting (less disease?) Reduced water
needs (evapor.) More uniform coverage (if level
terrain) Possible automation ?? Same growth,
yields?
  • Lay tube after lay-by or ?, salvage after
    harvest- Annual replacement of tubing- Moderate
    initial cost, maintenance- Low pressure, Hp
    (15-30 psi)- Field elevation limitations
    (zones)- Proper application rate, intervals

25
Tobacco Drip Irrigation Design, An
Example 5 ac
  • Given 5 ac.
  • Field Slope 2 downslope
  • Field Dimensions 256 ft. x 850 ft.
  • Row Spacing 42 inches.
  • One drip tape / row
  • Pond to field 400 ft., Slope 0

26
Example layout, 5 Ac., 850 x 256
1
2
3
4
27
Example layout, 50 Ac., 850 x 256
28
Tape Specs. 5 Ac.
  • Select 5/8 in., T-tape 8 hole sp.,
    0.33gpm/100ft.
  • Amount of tape 12,446 ft/ac. (62,230 ft. / 5
    ac.)
  • Need 9 rolls _at_ 7,500 ft. / row 67,500 ft.
  • Flow rate / ac. 41 gpm (205 gpm / 5 ac.)
  • Select 4 zones _at_ 51 gpm.
  • Emission uniformity _at_ 10 psi inlet and 850 ft.,
    2 downslope 85.(12-15 ft elevation change
    50 change in output)

29
Pipe, Valve and Pump Size
  • Pipe sizes
  • Header 1 ¼ in. PE.
  • Submain 2 in. PE or PVC.
  • Main 2 in. PVC.
  • Valves 1 ½ in.
  • Pump
  • 52 gpm _at_ 50 psi (depending on filtration sys.)
  • 52 gpm _at_ 116 ft. of head.
  • Pump efficiency 60.
  • BHP 2.53
  • Purchase 3 HP or 2.5 HP Electric (5-7 Hp Gas.)
  • Filters ? Screen or Disk rated for 60 gpm
    flow, cleanable

30
Estimated System Costs
  • Traveling Gun Trickle
  • per UT Info, Handout The Burley Tobacco
    Farmer, Mar. 2002, Jeremy Stull, Fm.
    Mgt. Spec., Randy Womack, Ed.

Item Trav. Gun
Trickle 5
Acre 20 Acres 5 Acre 20 AcresSystem
(loan) 9,400 20,150 5,287 8,936
Anl. Tr. Tape 1,095 4,049 Inv.
Per acre 1,880 1,008 1,059
447 Anl. 219 202 Anl. Loan
Pay. 2,480 5,315 1,395 2,357
(5 Yr, 10) Tr. Tape - - 1,095
4,049 Total Anl. Cost 2,480 5,315
2,490 6,406 Break-Even, Burley 354 lbs.
190 lbs 356 lbs 229 lbs


31
GAD, 1-22-03
Irrigation Cash Flow Analysis By Years Yields
32
Summary on Trickle
  • Understand the management needs
  • Use means to know soil moisture
  • Know how much water is being applied
  • Not an emergency system (in my opinion)
  • But can be used to increase yields
  • Costs/Benefits needs further study

33
Summary on Sprinkler
  • System operation well known
  • Proven equipment readily available
  • Used equipment can be economical purchase
  • Long life with proper care
  • Custom operation possible
  • Resale potential

34
Lets hope droughts can be managed better in the
future
1983
Thanks. Lights please
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