DRIP IRRIGATION FOR STRAWBERRY HYDROPHONIC

Strawberry’s water requirements

Strawberries grown on inert substrate, generally coconut fibre, have very high water requirements. During the periods of maximum evapotranspiration, irrigation is repeated about ten times a day (daytime), at maximum 2 l/h per drip point.

The type of inert substrate affects the hydration times of the artificial container, where stoloniferous strawberries will develop their roots.

The substrates that retain more moisture are the ones richer in organic matter (substrates not completely inert) like coconut fibre. Generally, the containers are plastic bags filled with inert substrate with 8/10 or 12 holes for placing the seedling.

The system density on a surface of 1000 square meters is about 12,000 seedlings with an average daily consumption of 5000 liters of solution.

Irrigation system for hydroponic strawberries

The irrigation system consists of highly accurate pressure compensating drippers with a drop stop system. The flow rate is distributed by means of manifolds that, thanks to capillary tubes and stakes, directly supply the inert substrate with the water flow-rate of the necessary nutrient solution.

The drop stop function is essential for this application since it prevents driplines discharge thus allowing irrigation uniformity and efficiency during the short irrigation cycles (max three minutes).

The flow rate compensation of the dripper also allows to adjust flow rates and pressures and to distribute the fertilizer to all drip points. These two conditions are essential to irrigate hydroponic strawberries correctly.

Filtration system

Considering the low flow rate of the drippers used, water filtration is fundamental. Water treatment must be selected and sized
according to the water source. Waters coming from rivers, lakes, canals, reservoirs should be filtered with automatic backwash disc or
sand filters, while water coming from wells should be treated with hydrocyclone and disc or screen filters subsequently

Fertigation

In the cultivation of strawberries in soil it is particularly important to equip the irrigation system with a fertigator capable of dosing nutrients in the appropriate percentages and correcting the two main parameters of the nutrient solution (pH and EC).

The strawberry prefers nutrient solutions with a pH of between 5.5 and 6.5 to promote absorption of most nutrients, and with an electrical conductivity almost always lower than 1200 MS/cm2, as higher values may be toxic for many varieties.

It is advisable to use fertigators such as Dosabox Junior Automatic which, in tandem with a volumetric counter installed on the main line, is able to proportionally inject up to 3 different fertilisers in the pipeline, while monitoring pH and EC; the ease of use of this fertirrigator and its high reliability make it extremely suitable for growing strawberries in soil, allowing the optimal distribution of all the micro and macronutrients needed by the plant to achieve its maximum productivity.

Automation

To automate the irrigation system you can opt for Commander EVO Basic, a highly professional controller that not only guarantees reliability in setting irrigation shifts and watering volumes, but also allows you to minimise running costs mainly related to opening and closing solenoid valves in the field, cleaning filters and setting fertigation.

The controller also offers the possibility of installing volumetric metres, weather stations and agri-environmental monitoring sensors so that the real water stress of the crop can be assessed and monitored and what the plant actually needs can be returned.

Hydroponic strawberries - Drip irrigation Irritec

A practical example of how to drip irrigate strawberry hydroponic:

Irrigation System Hydroponic strawberries Design - Irritec

Here are the Irritec products you need to drip irrigate strawberry hydroponic

1

EXXTREME TAPE®

The eXXtreme Tape dripline® is particularly useful in the case of water that is “difficult” to filter: the continuous double inlet filter is twice the length of the pipe (system designed and patented by Irritec®), guarantees excellent filtration performance even when using water that is heavily laden with sediment, sludge and dirt.

Kdrop system - drip irrigation strawberry hydroponic

2

LOW DENSITY POLYETHYLENE PIPES

LDPE irrigation pipes are produced with the cutting-edge systems by using selected special resins, highly resistant to chemical and atmospheric agents. Highly resistant to mechanical stress, it is particularly suitable for laterals and it can withstand the deformations caused by the assembly of insert fittings.

irrigation pipes strawberry hydroponic

3

CONNECTO™ FITTINGS

Connecto™ compression fittings for the conveyance of pressurized fluids, recommended for irrigation and gardening systems, is particularly easy and quick to install.

CONNECTO™ FITTINGS IRRITEC - Hydroponic strawberries

4

METAL FILTES

Irritec® metal filters are solid and durable. They can manage wide range of flow-rates. Manual or automatic versions vailable for canal and well water.

filtration system strawberry hydroponic

5

FERTIGATION

Irritec® fertigation systems combine practicality and reliability with a modern system of injection of nutritive solutions. Fertilizer management is regulated by simple fertigation solutions that can be set according to agronomic and nutritional requirements. The correct hydraulic management, fundamental for conveying the right nutrients to the plants, is guaranteed by the multiannual experience in the sizing of machines and equipment as well as reliable and  certified materials.

Fertigation System Irritec - Strawberry Hydroponic

Discover how to irrigate others crops

Irritec wants to make life easier for those who take care of the plants, for work and for passion. We aim to ensure that every drop is spent as well as possible, minimizing the ecological footprint.

Agronomic Irritec Team support the farmer also on after-sale and installation, with continuous assistance and efficiency control. Continuous attention to the customer needs to provide succesful and sustainable solution with an efficience service.