Drip Irrigation is the use of tubes or pipes to irrigate crops by passing water to the roots of the crops in a trickle manner. Drip irrigation is the most efficient type of irrigation in the world.
With drip irrigation, the roots of plants can get water in drops. Drip irrigation only targets the roots of plants for irrigation unlike other types of irrigation that sprays water to the leaves and stems of plants.
Drip Irrigation is a concept that farmers are now embracing due to its advantages. A typical drip irrigation system consists of drip tapes or tubes, main pipes, connectors, end plugs, venture injector, joiners, filters and air valve.
Drip irrigation tapes can be laid on the surface of the soil; it can also be laid as a sub-surface irrigation system. In the case of sub-surface drip irrigation system, the drip irrigation tapes or pipes are buried.
The emitters on the drip irrigation tapes or tubes are the devices that are used for the emission of water to the base of plants.
For farmers, its very useful, effective and profitable to use drip irrigation in Nigeria.
Why buy from us?
one acre drip irrigation kit
one acre drip irrigation system
one hectare drip irrigation system
For those who buy our drip irrigation kits, we provide free soil analysis. A farmer who does not do an analysis of his soil, stands the risk of losing his investment.
We also do free water test or analysis.
We design an agronomic plan and fertilization plan free of charge. An agronomic plan is designed after the result of the soil and water test. It shows what to do on your farm from day 1 of planting till the end of harvest. It shows the exact quantity and timing of all types of fertilizers and pesticides to be used.
Also, we provide free advisory on how to tinker the pH of your fertilizer and chemical solution.
Free profit optimization advisory.
Free installation service for bulk buyers.
Free hydrological study and CAD irrigation design for very large buyers.
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Cost and Benefit Analysis of Using Drip Irrigation in Nigeria
The benefits of using drip irrigation mostly outweighs its cost, I will explain this with a case of Mallam Azeez (not real name), a cucumber farmer in Jos, Plateau.
Mallam Bello has been growing cucumber on his one hectare of farmland for over 16 years, the best yield he recorded using rain fed and flood irrigation was 4 tonnes (about 100 bags of cucumbers).
Mallam Bello contacted Veggie Concept in 2018 about the possibility of using drip irrigation on his one hectare of cucumbers farmland. Mallam Bello saw the drip irrigation system on a farm in Kano, so he was told to contact Veggie Concept.
Veggie Concept sold and installed drip irrigation system on Mallam Bello’s farmland after soil and water analysis had been done on his soil. Mallam Bello was educated on how to fertigate his fertilisers through the drip irrigation system and how he can treat his soil by passing nematicides through the drip irrigation system.
After installation of the drip irrigation system on Mallam Bello’s one hectare farmland, his total harvest of cucumber fruits after the first season was about 48 tonnes (1,200 bags of cucumbers). Mallam Bello was shocked; he recorded about 1,100% increase in his yield. Drip irrigation simply increased his yield by 1,100%.
Today, Mallam Bello has about 20 hectares of farmland under drip irrigation.
We have over 200 customers who have increased their yield and profit tremendously, thanks to drip irrigation.
Cost of Drip Irrigation in Nigeria
The cost of drip irrigation kit per acre in Nigeria varies from N250,000 – N900,000 depending on the quality of the drip irrigation system.
At Veggie Concept, we stock standard and quality drip irrigation systems; we do not sell poor quality drip irrigation kits that will get blocked in just a season.
A lot of the drip irrigation systems sold in Nigeria are poor quality, they often get bad or unusable after few weeks or months. The unscrupulous dealers who sell these low quality irrigation systems know that Nigerians like cheap things, because of the price sensitive nature of Nigerians, these unscrupulous sellers deceive them with ridiculously low prices, only to sell them poor irrigation systems.
Would you love to buy a cheap low quality drip irrigation system that will get bad within a few weeks? Or you will rather buy an affordable high quality drip irrigation system that can last for a very long time?
Who is smarter here? A person who buys a cheap and poor quality drip irrigation system but comes back to buy the high quality type months later because the cheap and poor quality type he bought has gone bad. Or a person that buys the high quality type. Of course, the former is penny wise and pound foolish, because of his price sensitive nature, he needs to come back to buy the high quality drip irrigation system. The latter is wise.
Warning: Avoid cheap and poor quality drip irrigation systems at all cost.
Benefits and uses of drip irrigation
Farmers in Nigeria and other countries use drip irrigation because it has a lot of advantages. The use of drip irrigation in Nigeria can significantly increase the yield of farmers whilst saving water and cost. Compare drip irrigation to other types of irrigation like sprinklers and flood irrigation, you will see that drip irrigation is very water, power and cost efficient.
The following are some of the benefits of using drip irrigation in Nigeria:
Improved yield: Drip irrigation enables the farmer to have improved yield due to the effects of constant and trickle irrigation and also the ability of the drip irrigation to pass fertilisers to the roots of the plant through a process called fertigation. Fertigation can increase the yield of some crops by as much as 200%. With drip irrigation, a farmer can significantly increase the number of plants on his farmland; this can also lead to increased crop yield.
All year round irrigation: Drip irrigation provides water to crops all year round. In Nigeria, most farmers cultivate their crops only during the rainy season. During the dry season, these farmers are idle and poor because they have no means to irrigate their crops. With drip irrigation, watering of crops is assured all year round. This is why the use of drip irrigation is called brain fed farming. Farmers are likely to make more money during the dry season, because of reduced supply occasioned by the non-availability of water. Do you know that a basket of tomatoes in the late dry season and early rain season can be 400% higher than the price in the rainy season. Drip irrigation can enable a farmer to enjoy these high prices.
Efficiency in the use of water: If you have used other types of irrigation like rain guns, sprinklers and spray tubes, you will know that they waster a lot of water. They are simply not water efficient. Drip irrigation enables farmers to pass water to the roots of their plants in a droplet manner. The roots are more efficient than other parts of the plants in the use of water. Drip irrigation can save water efficiently compared to other types of irrigation.
Lesser weed worry: Why some farmers run away from sprinkler irrigation is the indiscriminate it sprays water to the soil on the farmland, it encourages weed pressure. What do weeds do to crops? Weeds can reduce the yield of your crop; it can harbor pests and diseases which can later be transmitted to your crops. Weeds can also increase the overhead of the farmers because he will need to weed the farm. Drip irrigation only applies water in trickles to the base of the plants so the incidences of weeds on the farm will be greatly reduced.
Labour efficiency: Drip irrigation can drastically reduce the cost or overhead of a farmer. For example, drip irrigation enables fertigation and fertigation can reduce the need for human labour to side dress plants with fertilisers by up to 90%. Drip irrigation can also reduce the cost of applying nematicides to farmland. Imagine a situation where a farmer has to apply nematicides to 100 hectares of farmland by hand; he will need a lot of labourers. With drip irrigation, he can simply use a venture injector to apply the nematicides within a few minutes or hours with little or no human intervention. Also take for instance, the local farmers that use flood irrigation in Nigeria. They need a lot of labourers to lift the hoses and irrigate the farmland. With drip irrigation, you can irrigate your farmland even at the comfort of your home, if you connect your drip irrigation with WIFI and mobile technology.
Lesser Fungal Attacks: Why are fungal diseases common in the rainy season in Nigeria? It is simply because of the increase in humidity and the splashing of water on the leaves and stems of the plants. When water stays on the leaves and stems of plants, the tendency of the plants to have fungal diseases is high. Drip irrigation reduces the risk of plants having fungal diseases as it only applies water to the roots or base of plants.
Application of chemicals: Do you know that you can apply your chemicals like insecticides, fungicides, acaricides and nematicides through the drip irrigation system. With a venture injector or a dosing pump, a farmer can apply nematicides, insecticides, fungicides and acaricides etc. to its crops. These chemicals must be systemic so that the roots of the plants can transmit them to all the parts of the plants. For instance, if the drip irrigation system is used to apply insecticides to the plants, any insects that bites and eats any part of the plant will die. In the case of nematicides, the drip irrigation system allows the farmer to apply nematicides to the base of the plants; this can be helpful in the eradication or reduction of harmful nematodes in the soil. The process of applying chemicals through the drip irrigation system is called chemigation.
Application of fertilisers: The drip irrigation system through the venturi injector or the dosing pump can be used to apply soluble fertilisers to plants. The process of applying fertilisers or nutrients to plants through the drip irrigation system is called fertigation. The farmer only needs to mix his fertilisers with water, then he can use either a venture injector or a dosing pump to pass the fertilizer solution to the plants or crops on his farmland. Fertigation has been proven to increase the yield of farmer by 30-200% as compared to top dressing of fetilisers by hand.
What to look out for when buying drip irrigation system or kit in Nigeria
Veggie Concept is one of the leading and largest sellers of drip irrigation systems in Nigeria. A lot of the sellers of irrigation materials in Nigeria are just traders who know nothing about agronomy or precision agriculture. They mostly import sub-standard drip irrigation kits and sell to unsuspecting farmers at ridiculously low prices, only for the kits to get bad within a very short time, probably weeks. How can you know a good drip irrigation system in Nigeria?
Does the trader or dealer know anything about precision farming or agriculture?
One of the ways to know unscrupulous irrigation materials dealers in Nigeria is that they know nothing about precision agriculture or farming. They just want to sell their merchandise. How can you buy drip irrigation from a person that does not know anything about irrigation or farming? It is common for this type of sellers to sell the wrong type of drip irrigation for the unsuspecting buyer. Always insist on buying your drip irrigation systems from dealers who are skilled in irrigation design and precision agronomic practices.
Is the drip irrigation system too cheap?
What is the price of the drip irrigation kit you want to buy? Is the price or cost too low? If yes, you are likely buying a sub-standard drip irrigation system. Do not be enticed by the cheap price, you are likely to regret your actions later if you buy that incredibly cheap drip irrigation system. The unscrupulous irrigation equipment dealers in Nigeria know that the average Nigerian likes cheap things; he uses this knowledge to import sub-standard irrigation materials and sell to people at cheap prices. If you buy these low quality cheap irrigation systems, within weeks, you will come back to buy the quality type. Is this not ‘penny wise pound foolish’?
Does the drip irrigation system have UV treatment?
A farmer should insist on buying drip irrigation tapes or tubes that are resistant to ultra violet rays. If you buy the type that has no UV treatment, it will get back within a few weeks or months. Now, the problem, how will you know the drip irrigation tapes that are resistant to ultra violet rays? Most of the unscrupulous dealers will lie to you that their kits are resistant to UV rays. It is always better to buy from credible suppliers like Veggie Concept.
What is the quality of the drip irrigation system?
Let me sound a note of warning here, you cannot know the quality of a drip irrigation system by just touching seeing or feeling it. You can see two very similar drip irrigation system and the quality are different. To fall prey to the unscrupulous irrigation dealers, just avoid very cheap systems and buy from reputable dealers like Veggie Concept.
Are the drip irrigation tapes or tubes thick?
This is one of the funniest questions I have had a lot of buyers ask? That a drip irrigation tape or tube is thick does not mean that it will last long. As a matter of fact, some very thick drip irrigation tapes or tubes brittle and get bad within weeks after installation. Do not be deceived by sellers saying their drip irrigation tapes are thick and of high quality. I have seen a drip irrigation tape that was 0.2 mm that lasted several years. I have also seen a drip irrigation tape that was 0.4mm thick that lasted just 8 weeks after installation. Please be advised.
What are the characteristics of the drip tapes or tubes?
Drip irrigation tapes or tubes to be used for different crops may be different. Some crops need wide spacing while some need close spacing. You should check for the emitter spacing and water emission rates of drip tapes before you buy. You may also want to check for the pressure compensating capability of drip tapes before you buy.
Types of farmers that need drip irrigation in Nigeria
All farmers who do not currently use drip irrigation in Nigeria need this fantastic type of irrigation. As a farmer in Nigeria, you do not need to break the bank before you can get a drip irrigation system.
A drip irrigation system can be used for a backyard garden and can also be used for a 10,000 hectare farm. The size of your farm in Nigeria does not matter at all.
Is your farm located in Ogun State, Lagos State, Kano State, Oyo State, Osun State, Nasarawa State, Abuja, Kaduna, Port Harcourt, Owerri, Akwa-Ibom, Jos or any location in Nigeria. A drip irrigation system can increase your yield and profitability tremendously.
Components of a drip irrigation system in Nigeria
The drip irrigation system has many parts which make up the system as a whole. The components of a drip irrigation system in Nigeria are:
Drip Tapes: The drip tapes are the tube like polythene pipes that make up the drip irrigation system. Emitters are usually pre-manufactured and fitted at equal intervals on the drip tapes. The drip tapes are laid on the beds, ridges or rows of the farmland. They are usually laid at the side of the row of plants on a farmland. The drip tapes come in different thicknesses and sizes. Some drip tapes are 8 mil thick while some are 15 mil thick, some are even 20 mil thick. Some drip tapes are also 16mm in diameter, some are smaller or bigger. The emitters on the drip tapes can get clogged if you do not flush the drip irrigation system often or if you use dirty water without a good filtration system.
Main Line: The main line is the big hose or pipe that the drip tapes connect to. The main line brings water from the source of water to the farmland or place where the drip irrigation system will be installed. The main line can be hose or a PVC pipe. It can also be a steel or iron pipe. The drip irrigation system cannot function if there is no main line.
Valves: The valve is the device used in the control of the flow of water in the drip irrigation system. The valve can be used to block or stop the flow of water to an area or zone on the drip irrigation system.
Air Valves: This device removes air from the flowing water in the drip irrigation system. The air valve can prevent knocking sound or damage in the drip irrigation system.
Backflow Preventer: The backflow preventer or valve prevents the back flow of water to the source of water. In a case where a farmer passes fertlisers or chemicals through his drip irrigation system, he needs a backflow preventer so that the chemical will not flow back to his source of water.
Croco Connectors: The croco connectors are the types of connectors used for the connection of the drip tapes to the lay flat hoses.
Grommet and Take Off: The grommet is the rubber inserted on PVC pipes so that the take-off connectors can be inserted into it. The grommets and take-offs are used to connect drip tapes to PVC pipes.
Punch Tool: This is also called puncher, it is used to create holes on lay flat hoses so that the croco connectors can be fitted on the lay flat hoses.
Venturi Injector: The venture injector is the device used for the injecting of fertilisers and nutrients into the drip irrigation system. It can also be used to inject chemicals and pesticides into the drip irrigation system. Venturi Injector is simply used for fertigation and chemigation.
Dosing Pump: The dosing pump does the functions of the venture injector. It can be used for fertigation and chemigation.
End plugs: These are the devices used to block the end of the drip tapes. It stops water from wasting away from the end of the drip tapes.
Drip Joiners: These are used for the connection of drip tapes. They can also be used to repair damaged drip tapes.
Filters: A drip irrigation system needs filters. Filters are used to separate the dirts and other impurities in the flowing water. It prevents these impurities to get into the drip irrigation system.
Gravity Drip Irrigation System in Nigeria
Gravity drip irrigation system can be used by small holder farmers. A lot of farmers in Nigeria have asked us how they can use drip irrigation so that they would not spend too much money to buy large tanks and pumps.
The gravity drip irrigation system only needs a tank to be installed on a height and the connection of the drip irrigation system to the overhead tank. The gravitational force will allow the water to flow from the height down to the drip irrigation system.
You do not need to set up large pumping system to use gravity drip irrigation system. You can even use hand to fetch water and pour in the overhead tanks or reservoirs. Water can also be harvested into the overhead reservoir in the gravity drip irrigation system.
How to Set Up a Drip Irrigation System
Most drip irrigation system especially the type for small farms can be installed by the farmer himself. If your farm is less than 2 or 3 acres, you can install your drip irrigation system yourself; you do not need to spend a lot of money to engage a technician to do for you. Just ask the irrigation dealer to send you a design, video and guidance.
To set up or to install your drip irrigation system, you need to have a source of water on your farmland. The source of water can be river, well, borehole or dam. There should be adequate water. You should also have an overhead tank if you are using the gravity system. If you are using the pressurized system, you need to pump from your source of water into the drip irrigation system. Other items needed for you to install your drip irrigation system include drip tapes, connectors, main line, lay flat hoses, punch tools, end plugs, valves and plumbing tools.
Questions and Answers about Drip Irrigation in Nigeria
Question: Can drip irrigation systems work for all the types of crops grown in Nigeria?
Answer: Drip irrigation can be used for all crops grown in Nigeria. As a matter of fact, drip irrigation can be used for the cultivation of all types of crops grown worldwide. Drip irrigation can be used for tomato farming, cucumber farming, pepper farming, cocoa farming, coconut farming and plantain farming etc.
Question: Should I buy a very cheap drip irrigation system?
Answer: You should be extremely careful when buying very cheap drip irrigation system. Yu may think you have seen a bargain, please stop, you might be buying a sub-standard drip irrigation kit that will last for just a few weeks. Do not be blinded by ridiculously low prices, it is most times a bait to lure unsuspecting farmers.
Question: Can a farmer make profit if he uses drip irrigation, given the high cost of the drip irrigation kit?
Answer: Yes, a farmer can make good profit using drip irrigation. The use of drip irrigation and fertigation can increase the crop yield of farmers by up to 200%.
Question: Where can farmers get drip irrigation systems to buy in Nigeria?
Answer: Quality drip irrigation can be bought from Veggie Concept; you can call this firm through 08025141924 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Question: Can drip irrigation be used in greenhouses and poly tunnels?
Answer: Yes, drip irrigation can be used in greenhouses and poly tunnels, as a matter of fact, most greenhouses have drip irrigation facilities.
Question: Can fertilisers and pesticides be passed through the drip irrigation tapes and tubes?
Answer: Drip irrigation systems can be used to pass fertilisers and pesticides to the roots of plants. This makes drip irrigation to make farmers save a lot of money on labour cost. It also boosts farmers’ fertilizer and pesticides’ efficiency.
Question: Can any farmer operate the drip irrigation system?
Answer: The drip irrigation is a very simple technology. An illiterate can even use it.
Question: Can plastic mulch be used with drip irrigation?
Answer: Yes, drip irrigation tapes can be laid under the plastic mulch. Both are part of plasticulture.
Drip irrigation can boost farming activities in the Nigeria.