Explore the irrigation management practices that are recommended by research to maintain citrus tree productivity.
Ample irrigation has shown to be an important factor in maintaining citrus tree productivity in the face of citrus greening, especially for young citrus trees. Best irrigation management practices for young citrus tree productivity were shared in a Citrus Industry article written by UF/IFAS professors and Extension agents. See the takeaways below.
Irrigation Management Practices
The following are highlights concerning irrigation management practices for young citrus trees from the article:
- Irrigation needs to be precise. According to the article, “poor water-management practices, such as infrequent irrigation, lead to water stress in trees resulting in limited growth and impaired root development.” Similarly, “over-irrigation (applying more water than the tree needs) results in excessive fertilizer leaching beyond the root zone, particularly in summer months when Florida receives more than 60 percent of its annual rainfall.”
- Growers should utilize tools like soil moisture sensors and irrigation apps to know their trees’ exact water needs.
- In a greenhouse study, it was found that “well-watered trees showed greater root mass, trunk size and height compared to the trees that were not well watered. This study showed that for young trees, frequent irrigation is critical for maintaining tree growth, root mass and establishing a solid planting.”
- The use of soil amendments, especially compost, “is critical for improving water-holding capacity on sandy soils where most of the Florida citrus trees are grown.”
- “Frequent irrigation practices using drip and microjet (microsprinkler) irrigation systems are important for achieving rapid tree growth, root mass and grove establishment along with high productivity.”
Griffin Fertilizer is committed to helping both growers and ranchers make sound agronomic and economic decisions in order to maximize the health of their grove and pasture. As a full-service custom dry & liquid fertilizer blender and crop protection product distributor, we will continue our mission to further advance Florida agriculture. For questions or concerns about your farm or pasture, contact us and one of our team will be in touch.