DRIP IRRIGATION FOR POMEGRANATE

Cultural background, dissemination and origin

Although considered a minor fruit tree for a long time, the pomegranate (Punica
granatum L.) has been the focus of intense cultivation, commercial and scientific interest for more than 20 years, so much so that it is now considered a cash crop in its own right, on a par with the main fruits grown around the world today. The key reasons for this growing trend are related to the countless health, medicinal (cosmetic and pharmaceutical) and taste properties of the fruit and its derivatives.

Soil and climate requirement, irrigation and water management

The pomegranate is a tree crop whose strength lies in its hardiness: it has a high capacity to take root (cuttings are the primary method of propagation) in various types of soil and can withstand long periods of drought. However, as is wellknown, to rationalise cultivation, we need to mitigate the effects of stress on the crop as much as possible. For this reason, therefore, irrigation is the main production factor that helps the farmer optimally manage the plant’s vegetative-productive phases. The annual water requirement of the pomegranate in the Mediterranean environment is between 4,000 and 10,000 m³/ha; this figure will, of course, vary according to the soil conditions of the cultivation area and the seasonal climate. The water supply significantly improves the profitability of the pomegranate orchard, accelerating the entry into production, standardising the ripening periods, the size of the fruit, the consistency of the arils, the colour of the skin and the juice, as well as improving quality aspects such as acidity and shelf life.

Irrigation system for pomegranate

The most suitable irrigation system for pomegranate cultivation is undoubtedly drip irrigation, i.e. the installation of a single or double drip line along the row, under the mulching fabric, with a spacing of between 40 and 75 cm depending on the planting pattern and flow rates of 1.50 or 2.10 l/h. In particular, the Irritec solution involves the use of a regular drip line (Tandem or Junior) with 50-60 cm spacing or, in the case of particularly long rows or difficult topographical conditions, the self-compensating version, with the possibility of choosing between a flat (Multibar F) or cylindrical (Multibar C) drip line, with the spacing as indicated above and hourly flow rates of 1.60 or 2.10 litres.

Filtration

To properly manage the micro-irrigation system, an accurate filtration system is essential, including a filter or battery of filters upstream of the irrigation system for primary water filtration, followed preferably by a secondary filtration system using sector filters.

The choice of the type of filter depends fundamentally on the nature of the supply source and the degree of filtering required by the dripline model chosen for the irrigation system.

Fertigation, automation and sensors

Fertigation is undoubtedly an extra weapon for anyone wanting to grow fruit for profit. Therefore, also for pomegranate cultivation, choosing a professional fertigation system helps the farmer create special fertilisation plans based on the relevant phenological phase, improving practicality in operations. Irritec’s fertigation benches guarantee high reliability and precision.

The most suitable for open field tree cultivation, such as pomegranate cultivation, is currently the DosaBox Junior Automatic. Irritec offers programmer units (Commander EVO series) for setting the periods and durations of individual watering, managing the Programmer-Solenoid valve connection via electric cables or, in the case of large extensions, via systems that communicate with low frequency radio waves (Evo Radio System).

This means that, using a radio transmitter and antenna installed at the programmer unit and several receivers placed near the solenoid valves, we can remotely manage the individual irrigation sectors by converting the radio signal (picked up by the receivers) into an electrical signal. The system can also be managed remotely by installing a suitable Wi-Fi or GPRS modem.

Pomegranate Trees - Drip Irrigation - Irritec

A practical example of how to drip irrigate pomegranate

Irrigation System Pomegranate Trees - Irritec

Here are the Irritec products you need to drip irrigate pomegranate

1

TANDEM® – MULTIBAR®

Tandem is Irritec’s classic drip line with a cylindrical emitter. The drip head with double perforation makes it possible to increase the surface area to be irrigated. The classic dripline with cylindrical (Multibar C) or flat (Multibar F) pressure compensating dripper is ideal for irrigating multiseasonal crops and is suitable for sloping terrain and uneven topography.

tandem and multibar driplines for pomegranate

2

PIPELINES IN PE AND CONNECTO

The Connecto™ line of compression fittings for the conveying pressurised fluids, particularly suitable for irrigation and gardening systems, is characterised by its great speed and ease of assembly.

3

AUTOMATIC PLASTIC FILTERS

The Rotodisk® Automatic filter is a fibreglass-reinforced polyamide filter with a special mechanical-hydraulic system for automatic backwashing. Conveniently installed in batteries using hydro-valves and a control unit, they make it possible to maintain the continuity of the irrigation cycle and reduce water waste and the labour required to maintain a filtering station.

4

FERTIGATION, AUTOMATION AND SENSORS

Irritec® fertigation systems combine practicality and reliability with a modern nutrient injection system. Irritec® automation systems, such as the Commander EVO® and Commander NPK® programmers, meet the irrigation needs of farms of all sizes, combining pH and electrical conductivity management with a more professional approach to irrigation scheduling. They also come with radio remote controls, managed via software with internet access.

Fertigation System for pomegranate irrigation - Irritec

5

FITTINGS AND BRANCHES

Irritec® automation systems, such as the Commander EVO® and Commander NPK® programmers, meet the irrigation needs of farms of all sizes, combining pH and electrical conductivity management with a more professional approach to irrigation scheduling. They are also equipped with radio remote controls, managed via software with internet access.

FITTINGS AND BRANCHES POMEGRANATE - IRRITEC

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.