Fertigation for Apple Trees in the Pacific Northwest

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Fertigation is the application of nutrients through irrigation lines, during watering. In general, it is more readily adapted for use in micro-irrigation systems such as micro-sprinkler, microjet and drip than to more extensive systems such as sprinkler or furrow. It has the advantage of allowing fl exibility in the timing of nutrient additions, and under micro-irrigation, targeting the nutrients into the tree root zone with higher precision than possible with highpressure irrigation or rain-fed watering. It is particularly well suited to high-density production systems. Injection of nutrients into the irrigation line can be either passive (Venturi-type) or through pumps, which can proportion the amount of nutrient added to the fl ow. Th is paper will emphasize nutrient management with fertigation, not the design of fertigation systems.

Denise Neilsen
Gerry Neilsen
New York Fruit Quarterly