Irrigation with a 60% reduction of water consumption. The latest irrigation system, called the "sub-irrigation" system, has been developed building on positive research feedbacks and on the experience gathered with drop irrigation systems. It consists of a dripping underground pipe (also known as the dripline system), which is laid 20 to 40 cm beneath the ground. This pipe constantly moistens the soil and ensures that water is fully absorbed by the crops.
The term "irrigation performance" refers to the ratio between the quantity of water used by the plant and the quantity of water delivered to the ground. For traditional sliding systems, this value corresponds to 40% and in overhead irrigation systems to 65%, while in sub-irrigation systems it reaches 99%. This is due to the fact that water is delivered slowly and close to the roots.
These systems offer a number of further agronomic advantages, such as: ensuring a uniform distribution over the entire irrigated surface; keeping the soil dry between the rows, thus allowing the operation of machines; keeping the soil well ventilated, thus avoiding soil compaction and cracks; enhancing soil salinity control; enabling automation throughout all irrigation phases; enabling the installation in all types of terrains, including uneven ones.Moreover, the system is environmentally friendly, as it does not require the chemical treatments that are typically used in pre- and post-precipitation phases; it reduces the amount of fertilisers, since distribution is performed in a constant and precise manner through fertirrigation pumps; it also requires much less power, which in turn results in a reduction of electricity or fuel costs.