Dr Juan Enciso center is conducting an irrigation experiment to help vegetable growers save water Planting seeds in the test plot are his technicians Rafael Lopez left and Marino Saldivar
Dr. Juan Enciso, center, is conducting an irrigation experiment to help vegetable growers save water. Planting seeds in the test plot are his technicians, Rafael Lopez, left, and Marino Saldivar.

Researchers look for more efficient ways to use water

New water use research project will study ways to conserve water while keeping in mind grower profitability.

Water users, including farmers who irrigate in south Texas, can do little to make it rain more often or increase water resources for the region. But using water more efficiently may reduce waste and improve irrigation efficacy.

Improved computer technologies could soon eliminate a lot of waste and guesswork of irrigating winter vegetables in South Texas, according to a Texas A&M AgriLife Research scientist in Weslaco.


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“There’s not much we can do to increase our water reserves, so we’re always looking for new ways to conserve the dwindling supplies we do have,” said Dr. Juan Enciso, an irrigation engineer at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Weslaco.

Enciso and his technicians are busy installing water meters, PVC pipe, drip irrigation tape, soil water sensors and other equipment to monitor water use and growth of winter onions and cabbage, as well as watermelons in the spring.

Enciso hopes to document water savings. (http://today.agrilife.org/2013/10/25/vegetable-irrigation-test-in-weslaco/)


Also of interest on Southwest Farm Press:

Drought status significantly improved from two years ago

Rainfall improves drought status

Biologist says shared conservation needed for Matagorda Bay

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