Wisconsin School for Beginning Market Growers. Irrigation for Small-scale Vegetable Production. Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems (CIAS)
The Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems (CIAS) is an interdisciplinary program that studies relationships between farming practices, farm profitability, the environment and rural vitality. The Wisconsin School for Beginning Market Growers, led by John Hendrickson program manager for CIAS at UW Madison, is a program that serves beginning farmers who want to grow and market fresh produce. Irrigation for Small-scale Vegetable Production covers the basic elements of starting and planning irrigation for your fresh market farm. Specifically this piece states that a “minimum of 8 gallons per minute (gpm) is required for each acre of horticultural crops to be irrigated”. Depending on the farm’s acreage, one can use this statistic to plan for water needs. This publication also looks at identifying your water source, laws and regulations relating to water usage in WI (or other state of residence), and choosing your irrigation system. Additional Resources are provided at the end. For information on water needs for specific crops see the table Vegetable Irrigation Needs, also out of the Wisconsin School for Beginning Market Growers.