From water management methods to research project results, our resources will help you to decide when and how to irrigate.
Water is applied to potato crops to improve quality and yield. Irrigation is also important for the management of common scab.
Early-season water management
The main driver for early season irrigation in the UK has been tuber quality, and levels of tolerance for common scab in both the pre-pack and processing sectors have declined markedly. Common scab is caused by Streptomyces scabiei and other pathogenic Streptomyces species that are widely distributed in most soils.
Late-season water management
Late-season water management, as the crop begins to senesce, requires different factors to be considered.
Types of irrigation
- Rain gun: overhead rain guns are the main method of application and are cheap and versatile.
- Overhead Boom: this system improves uniformity of water application, especially for scab control, but use can be restricted due to topography, layout, ‘field furniture’ and soil type.
- Drip/ Trickle: this method is more costly, but can be highly effective, applying water uniformly across large areas.
- Sprinkler: these systems reduce the labour requirement during the season and offer improved uniformity and the ability to apply small doses frequently.
Listen to this podcast (recorded June 2020) to learn more about irrigation systems efficiency and how to use irrigation to reduce common scab.