Hi and welcome to the latest blog from our very special market garden, at Canara Farm, Mylor. We hope you enjoyed our previous feature about the baby bunched carrots ready to harvest. Today Pete will be talking about the water infrastructure and irrigation system used on the farm.
‘’ We made a significant investment in the water infrastructure on the farm a couple of years ago. We have laid flat hosing and new sprinklers are set up all around the fields now. Before this we would take what equipment we had down and put them back up on a weekly basis. ‘’
‘’ It was very time consuming for the team, especially during the dry spell we experienced in May. The drought lasted a good five to six weeks in total. It was a big part of our week's work and we spent about two hours each day moving the equipment to where it was needed most. We now have 20 acres of land fully kitted out with automatic irrigation. ‘’
‘’ The system is made up of water pipes and control cables that run around the outside of our fields and this works on 24 volts with solenoid valves all controlled by a computer. We can irrigate hands free and also at the best times for the crop. This conserves our water supply, because we can avoid irrigation during hot peaks in the day and decrease wastage due to evaporation. ‘’
‘’ Our new cultural practices also mean we can keep on top of disease pressure. When you take lettuce as an example, we would irrigate around 4am in the early summer months before the sun would rise. Plants will have the maximum amount of time to take the water in, before the sun got too strong. The drying period happens really quickly, so by 11am in the morning the plants would already be dry. ‘’
We hope you have enjoyed reading about the water infrastructure on the farm and we look forward to sharing more with you. See you soon.