On-Farm Irrigation System Design and Operation
Blueberries require irrigation from early April (eastern Oregon and Washington) or early May (western Oregon) to the end of September. In the Willamette Valley, a field of blueberries use anywhere from 0.5 to 2 inches of water per week (from rain or irrigation). One inch of water equals 27,000 gallons per acre. Therefore, a 10-acre field of blueberries requires 270,387 gallons of water for each acre-inch of water. An irrigation system should be designed to meet the maximum irrigation requirements that might be needed during the growing season, and not the average irrigation requirements. Usually, the highest requirements are in late July, but peaks may vary from year to year, depending on the weather conditions, the location of the field, the cultivar, and the stage of fruit development (see ‘Irrigation Scheduling’ in the proceedings).