Irrigation Options – What Choices Do Smallholder Farmers Have? cover

Irrigation Options – What Choices Do Smallholder Farmers Have?

Southwest Florida is no stranger to rain, but even Mother Nature has her off days. Because of this unpredictability, Smallholder Farmers rely on a range of different irrigation options when it comes to agricultural pumping in Jacksonville, FL. These systems allow farmers to nourish and hydrate their livestock and crops even when there is less rain than might have been hoped for.

With controlled irrigation, farmers are able to control exactly how much nutrient-rich water is served so they can monitor their crops and feed livestock with more accuracy. In addition, agricultural pumping systems in Jacksonville can be set up to run on a particular schedule based on season and current water levels, giving farmers access to an easy-to-operate, fully managed irrigation solution at a moment's notice.

Let's take a closer look at some of the options available to Jacksonville farmers and the advantages enjoyed by each system.

Drip Systems

These are gravity-fed systems originating from tower-mounted tanks. Water hose lines are laid alongside crops, allowing for slow drip irrigation. This method allows for a controlled release that reduces over-watering, especially for young plants or seedlings. Reducing loss due to evaporation from daytime watering is a crucial benefit of drip systems. Tanks are fed water via a pump system, so this irrigation method requires some potentially high-cost upfront but the investment will be well worth it if the system is well-maintained.

Misting Systems

This less efficient method involves a similar hose system to be laid out but with higher water pressure running through the nozzles or holes in the hoses. Misted water vapor emerges from the system, settling onto the crops. Like the drip systems, misting requires a tank and pump to power the system, therefore requiring some initial investment cost.

Manual Irrigation

Ideally, for the smallest of farms, manually irrigating crops involves human intervention with whatever tools are at the farmer's disposal, be it hoses and buckets or perhaps a small truck with water tanks. For smaller farms, perhaps with budgetary constraints, manual irrigation is a low-cost but less flexible alternative to agricultural pumping in Jacksonville, FL. Drawbacks to this method include waste due to increased runoff, and of course, more of your laborer's time is tied up during this process.


Furrows, or troughs, are dug in the soil surrounding the crops, after which they are flooded with water, seeping into the ground underneath and around the crops. This method requires a large amount of water and for the troughs to be planned and dug before crop planting. Though inefficient due to the potential for daytime evaporation, this method does cover a large area of the crop during implementation and is less expensive than other methods.


The final small-scale agricultural pumping system used in Jacksonville, FL is one many folks are familiar with; the ever-present Sprinkler system. We've all hooked these up for our lawns at some point; these affordable systems can be easily scaled up for commercial farming applications. Fed by a pump or tower-mounted tank, these moderately-priced portable hose-connected nozzles can rotate 360 degrees, spraying water where needed as you move them around the property by hand or with a vehicle. Of course, you can hook them up to a computer-scheduled system similar to the Drip and Misting systems so they run at the most efficient times of the day to avoid evaporation.

Choose The Best Solution To Meet Your Needs

Modern agricultural pumping systems in Jacksonville, FL offer small-scale farmers the flexibility to choose the right strategy based on the needs of their properties, labor staff, and budgets. To find out more about what applications will work best for your needs, be sure to get in touch with our experts at Florida Pumping Solutions today. With the help of our passionate and knowledgeable staff, you can ensure you choose the best solution when it comes to agricultural pumping in Jacksonville, FL, and the surrounding region.

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