Low cost drip irrigation

An irrigation system which allows the slow and precise delivery of water to crops

Drip irrigation is a very water-efficient irrigation system. Water is dripped to individual plant root zones at low rates (2.25 l/hr) from emitters embedded in small diameter plastic pipes. 

Farmers in the Jhikhu Khola watershed, Nepal, suffer from a shortage of water for irrigation between the end of one monsoon (June to September) and the next pre-monsoon period (May). This seriously limits agricultural production and leads to much land being left fallow after the monsoon crops have been harvested. Only a small area is planted with winter crops. The sources of irrigation water (such as rivers, and streams) are limited and the amount of water they provide is inadequate for cropping. Most of the sources remain dry outside the monsoon. Farmers expend considerable time and labour gathering what water they can to irrigate their crops. Low cost drip irrigation (LCDI) has been introduced in the watershed as a cost effective way of making the best use of the limited available water.

WOCAT database reference: QT NEP6

Location: Kubinde village, Jhikhu Khola watershed, Kabhrepalanchok district

Technology area: ~ 0.1 km2

SWC measure: Management

Land use: Annual cropping

Climate: Humid subtropical

Related approach: Participatory action research for drip irrigation, QA NEP6

Compiled by: Madhav Dhakal, ICIMOD

Date: August 2004, updated December 2005

light green: districts in 2007