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Pukekohe cropping company installs new centre pivot irrigation and fertigation system

Pukekohe cropping company installs new centre pivot irrigation and fertigation system

Jason Thomas of ST Growers had a landowner with a 110 hectare block of land available for growing potatoes and they needed an irrigation solution that included less labour input and even watering and fertigation.

The company, along with land owner Peter Scott, approached the Tauranga branch of WaterForce with their brief and WaterForce designed a customised solution. It included a 700m Valley part circle pivot covering 84 hectares with a design flow of 65l/s, direct injection of chemicals, monitoring and ease of compliance.

The Valley pivot is equipped with fertigation injection via a Grundfos injection pump, this pumps directly in to the pivot allowing application of fertilizer, insecticides and fungicides with the benefit of keeping vehicle traffic off the crop.

Water to the pivot is pumped from the Waikato River using a Goulds end suction pump that draws through a suction line with a self cleaning screen and lifting gantry for screen inspection or maintenance.

It then passes through to the custom made galvanised pipe head works built by WaterForce which houses the latest Khrone ultrasonic water meter.  The water meter is incorporated into the pump control system for protection of the pump and system.

 For monitoring and compliance of the water take the flow meter is fitted to a Automatic Meter Reader (AMR) which is a self contained unit fitted to the flow meter that logs flow rates and volumes -  daily, weekly and seasonal. This information is fed directly in to the regional council’s database to ensure ease of compliance.

Soil moisture probes are used to determine the soil’s capacity to avoid over watering and recording the effectiveness of each pivot rotation.  The different depths also give a guide as to when the watering should resume.

Like an increasing number of WaterForce’s clients the partnership between WaterForce and ST Growers continues to flourish.

Speaking on behalf of ST Growers Ltd and landowners Peter and Gayle Scott, Jason Thomas says they engaged the services of WaterForce to design and build an 11 span, 180 degree pivot.  

“WaterForce have undertaken the project in a professional manner from concept to construction.  We are extremely pleased with the effectiveness of the irrigator and the whole build in general.”

He says there is no doubt they would recommend WaterForce to future potential customers and would not hesitate to use them again.

The team of engineers and designers at WaterForce work with clients to determine the best solution to suit their individual properties. The success of the ST Growers Ltd project proves such robust consultation and spcialised technical knowledge result in effective solutions.

*As seen in NZ Grower magazine