Online Irrigation Tool & National Water Quality Initiative
With water being the dwindling resource that it is, wouldn’t it be beneficial if landowners could calculate just the right amount of water needed to irrigate their crops, grass, or turf. Well now they can, thanks to an online tool developed by researchers at Washington State University. The Irrigation Scheduler Mobile is an interactive website geared to work the most effectively on smart phones or other mobile devices using data from WSU’s AgWeatherNet, a network of weather stations around the state that collects data on local weather conditions. By selecting the closest weather station and entering their soil and crop type ISB users can have information about water use, available water, and water deficit, including color coded warnings about low moisture levels that could result in plant damage. System recommendations will help users to optimize the efficiency with which they use water and get the best crop yields.
Ag Secretary Vilsack announced the launch of a new National Water Quality Initiative yesterday to improve water quality in 157 watersheds selected across the United States, dedicating $33 million of financial assistance for farmers and ranchers to implement conservation practices.
VILSACK: Each state and territory has worked with local partners and state water quality agencies to select anywhere from one to seven key watersheds to feature through this initiative. These are places that we feel that producers through their voluntary proactive conservation efforts can make an impact and really produce measurable benefits to water quality.
Watersheds in Washington eligible for the new initiative are the Upper and Lower South Fork Palouse River and the Middle Fork Palouse River.
I’m Lacy Gray and that’s Washington Ag Today on the Northwest Ag Information Network.