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Irrigation Management (Horticulture)
Irrigation Management (Horticulture) 100 Hours Certificate Course
Learn About Irrigation Management (Horticulture)
Irrigation Management(Horticulture) course online. Take your knowledge of irrigation systems further.! This course builds on skills achieved in the Irrigation modules to develop students’ skills to manage the design and operation of large scale irrigation systems for horticultural applications.
Want to become an irrigation specialist? This course does assume you have some knowledge of irrigation equipment and installation. It is ideal for those already working as a foremen, supervisors, managers and installers of irrigation systems in the irrigation industry.
Course topics covered include: how to monitor water usage, measuring volumes of water administered, problems with different impurities in water, electronic equipment, and different types of system designs and components.
If you have already completed our Irrigation (Gardens) course this module is ideal a progression course. It can be studied as an individual standalone course; however, we strongly recommend that you undertake Irrigation Gardens first.
The following topic areas are covered:
• Ways to optimise water efficiency
• Scheduling irrigation for nurseries, gardens, turf
and horticultural crops.
• Drainage system design
• Operating irrigation controllers
• Managing system maintenance
• Managing fertigation
• Evaluating irrigation designs
• Design of different systems
This course builds on skills achieved in Irrigation modules (BHT210 and BHT204) to expand your irrigationknowledge in order to manage the design and operation of large scale irrigation systems for horticultural applications.
Lesson Structure: Irrigation Management (Horticulture) BHT305
There are 8 lessons:
1 Waste water and recycling:
- Humans and Water
- Water and Plant Growth
- Minimising Plant Requirements
- Waste Water
- Types of Water Wastage: Evaporation, Seepage, Runoff, Overspray, Scheduling
- Recycling Waste Water
- Waste Water Treatment (Reed-Beds)
- Suitable Plants
2 Measuring water usage
- The Hydrological Cycle: Direct Fall onto the Land Surface, Intercepted Rainfall, Water Falling Directly into Water-Bodies
- Rainfall: Distribution, Variability, Frequency, Intensity, Evaporation, Effective Rainfall, Calculating Effective Rainfall
- Special Applications: Irrigation of Vines, Efficient Orchard Irrigation, Scheduling, Regulated Deficit Irrigation
- Measuring Soil Moisture
- Water Monitoring Equipment: Gypsum Blocks, Neutron Probe Meters, Tensiometers, Ceramic Block Sensors, Heat Sensor System, Dielectric Scanning Device, Applications
- Measuring Water Usage: Soil Characteristics, Unique Crop Requirements, Local Evapotranspiration Levels
- Drainage: Rainfall
- Improving Permeability During Construction: Cultivation, Adding Soil Ameliorants, Chemical Treatments
- Improving Surface Drainage After Construction: Sand Slitting, Aerating, Sub Soiling
- Layout of Drains: Outlet, Gradients, Distance Between Drainage Pipes, Depth Of Drains
- Types of Drains
- Laying the Drain
- Contingencies to Deal With Flood
4 Irrigation controllers
- Irrigation Controllers
- Controllers: Automatic Controllers, Time Clocks, Computerised Tap Controllers, Manual Controllers, Battery Powered Solenoid Valves
- Water Volumes and Duration
- Technical Data Sheet Mechanical Tap Timer
- Technical Data Sheet Electronic Tap Timer
- Pumps and Pressure Systems
- Types of Pumps: Table: Comparison Of Pump Types, Shallow Well Pumps, Deep Well Pumps
- Pumping Mechanisms: Piston Pumps, Centrifugal Pumps, Turbine Pumps
- When a Centrifugal Pump Fails to Operate
5 System maintenance
- Maintenance of Watering Systems: System Maintenance
- Maintenance Procedures and Scheduling: Periodic Inspections, Routine Upkeep, Contingency Work, Scheduling Work
- Maintaining Trickle Irrigation Systems: Cleaning Filters, Flushing the System, Use of Chlorine, Chlorination in Doses, Continuous Chlorination
- Maintaining Water Quality
- How to Improve the Quality of Water From Any Source
- Problems of Water Quality and Their Remedies – Physical Impurities: Sediment, Turbidity, Colour
- Problems of Water Quality and Their Remedies – Chemical Impurities: Hardness, Alkalinity, Corrosion, Iron, Salinity, Tastes and Odours
- Problems of Water Quality and Their Remedies – Biological Impurities: Algae, Micro organisms
- Problems of Water Quality and Their Remedies – Bacteriological Impurities
- Advantages of Fertigation
- Disadvantages of Fertigation
- Fertigation Types: Proportional Application, Quantitative Application, Continuous Application, Three Stage Application
- Fertiliser Injectors: Pump Injectors, Pressure Differential Injectors, Suction Injectors, Fertiliser Applications
- Plant Nursery Fertiliser Injection Techniques
7 Design evaluation
- Design Considerations: Water availability, Source and quality of water, Regulations, Site details, Finances and labour requirements
- Importance of Design
- Surface/Flood Irrigation: Border Check System, Hillside Flooding, Furrow Irrigation
- Sprinkler Irrigation: Wind Velocity and Wetting Pattern, Droplet Size, Rotational Speed, Evaporation
- Trickle Irrigation: Evaporation, Saves Labour, Does Not Get Water Where It’s Not Wanted, Reduces Weeds, Reduces Disease
- Microjet Irrigation
- Do it Yourself Micro Irrigation Systems
- Time Length of Watering
- Automatic Systems
- Water Management in Turf
8 System design
- Pre-Planning Information: What is the soil like? dimensions and other measurements, Relevant by laws, Environment of the locality, Available resources, Client/owner preferencies and priorities, photos of site
- Type of System
- Underground Pipes
Learning Goals: Irrigation Management (Horticulture) BHT305
- Devise ways to optimise water efficiency (ie. minimise wastage), during irrigation of plants
- Schedule irrigation for a large scale situation such as a large nursery, crop, turf, garden or pasture
- Analyse the design of different drainage systems
- Understand the operation of irrigation controllers and pumps for appropriate tasks
- Manage the maintenance of irrigation systems, both small and large scale
- Manage the fertigation of plants through an irrigation system
- Evaluate the design of large scale irrigation systems
- Design an irrigation system, including its drainage
Practical (Set Tasks)
- Contact your regional or local water authority. Ask them for information on their water restriction policy. When are water restrictions enforced and how do they affect water users? Focus mainly on the problems experienced by agricultural users. Consider ways that users can minimise their dependence on water access? Write a brief report on your findings and submit with your assignment.
- Visit a property that uses irrigation. Discuss with the manager the methods that are used to decide when to water and how much water to use. Is irrigation an important element in the success or otherwise of the property?
- Choose a drainage system to which you can get access. Remember a drainage system is designed to cope with most situations. They are many examples in your local everyday environment. Some examples might include the guttering on your house or even on your car. Discuss how the system operates and include sketches to show design features.
- Contact a number of companies that offer computerised and technology solutions to irrigation. Obtain prices and information if possible on appropriate working installations of their product. If possible try a follow up visit at least one (1) operation and discuss the product with a user as well as a retailer. If distance or transport is a problem then you could try writing for this information, which would be suitable for the purpose of this set task.
- Visit a property that uses large irrigation systems. Enquire about the maintenance of their systems. Consider how is water quality monitored and maintained?
- Investigate at least two irrigation supply companies.
- Observe how they service customers. Consider: are there any other services they provide?
MANAGE THE FERTIGATION OF PLANTS THROUGH AN IRRIGATION SYSTEM
Fertigation involves the controlled injection of liquid fertiliser to irrigation water. Fertigation is distinguished from chemigation which involves the application of other chemicals such as insecticides and fungicides to irrigation systems and which is therefore, more tightly regulated due to the implications for human health in agricultural irrigation.
Fertigation is only suited to irrigation systems that have been well designed to meet the needs of the plants they are intended to water. A good design means even distribution of water and fertiliser.
There are four main requirements of a fertigation. It should be able to regulate:
• The amount of fertiliser required.
• The proportion of fertiliser in the solution.
• The start and finish time for fertiliser application.
• The duration of the fertiliser application.
Advantages of Fertigation
There are a number of advantages of fertigation if appropriate equipment and fertilisers are chosen and the system is well maintained.
- If used in conjunction with an efficient irrigation system, both water and nutrients supplied through fertigation can be delivered at rates to achieve the optimum yield from a given crop.
- Fertiliser applications can easily be adjusted throughout the growing season and in accordance with specific crop requirements.
- The delivery of solid fertilisers is often labour intensive, whereas fertigation is not.
- Other fertilisers may be washed away in run-off or leached into the subsoil beyond the root systems of plants if rain follows soon after application and therefore may have to be re-applied.
- Fertigation offers a more measured approach to fertilisation by delivering a continuous
application of uniform, small amounts of fertiliser directly around plant roots.
With fertigation, compaction around plants caused by foot traffic is reduced thereby improving the rate of uptake of nutrients by plants.
Disadvantages of Fertigation
Fertigation is applicable to some systems and not others.
- it works well with trickle irrigation but can cause problems if used with sprinklers that do not evenly distribute the fertiliser.
- Corrosion to fittings and nozzles is another side effect to be aware of when deciding whether or not to use fertigation. As such, those parts of an irrigation system which come into contact with nutrients should be made of non-corrosive materials such as stainless steel and plastics.
- Irrigation maintenance costs could increase. If so, then fertigation may not be a viable option.
- Plants in pots which are usually given slow release fertilisers tend to develop high salinity levels during fertigation.
- The inclusion of fertiliser in mists such as in a shade house or greenhouse can produce algal problems. The nutrients in the irrigation system might also cause the presence of bacteria and slime moulds.
In order to overcome these issues, the irrigation system should be regularly cleaned by running acid or chlorine through it – but not when fertiliser is being applied. Therefore, good hygiene practices must be observed.
The main types of fertigation system are as follows:
With this system, the fertiliser application rate is proportional to the rate of discharge of water. For example, one litre of solution in 200 litres of water. The proportion can be easily increased when plants are using more water and decreased when they are not.
This method allows for a given concentration of nutrients to be injected for a particular group of plants. A different concentration may be applied to another group of plants. it is well suited to automatic systems.
With this method, a constant amount of nutrients is injected throughout the irrigation no matter what the water discharge rate is.
Three Stage Application
This method involves irrigation until the soil is wetted, followed by a period of nutrient injection, and then a further period of irrigation. The latter irrigation is intended to flush out the nutrients from the system.
Injectors are used in fertigation to provide nutrients to the irrigation water. The correct choice of injector is important. Three main types of injector are as follows:…
Assessment is based on a combination of completing all assignments and sitting for a final short one and a half hour exam, in your own location.
If you don’t cope well with exams then you may elect to undertake a project instead. This is a popular option.
In addition, most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson placed before the assignment. This is an opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge and skills and practical experience. This ADL feature is an added bonus not found at most online schools. Set Tasks are not required for assessment.
Some courses also have optional Self-Tests which are available on our online learning platform. These are not available by correspondence or by USB, and do not form part of your overall grade.
How our courses work
- Choose Your Learning Method
You choose how you would like to receive your course material, i.e., Online, USB or Correspondence. The choice is yours. You may also work on online or offline.
- Tutor Allocation
Every student is assigned their own dedicated tutor who is an expert in their subject area. They provide as much or as little individual contact as you require. You can contact your tutor whenever you need – your hours are not limited.
- Feedback and Assignments
Tutor Feedback is an essential component in helping you understand the subject matter. Tutor feedback is given in the form of notes written on the assignment. We encourage you to contact your Tutor where help with clarification and understanding of course material may be required.
Your assignments are located at the end of each lesson. You submit them for marking whenever you are ready. There is no time limit.
- Set Tasks and Self-Tests
Most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson before for the assignment. This is where you get the opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge, skills and practical experience. Many modules also have short Self-Tests.
Once all assignments have been completed you may then elect to sit for a one and half hour exam in your own location. If you prefer not to take the exam you do have the option to undertake a project instead.
Once the exam or project part of the course is completed, your Certificate is then processed. Please allow approximately 4 weeks for this.
- Design Your Own Qualification
ADL offers students the flexibility to self-design their own qualification – bundling together a combination of 100-hour modules into a qualification higher than a certificate.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Due to our years of experience and wide range of online courses, here are a list of our FAQs and Answers asked by Students.
Q. Do I need to buy text books?
A. No, you are not required to purchase expensive text books for any of our courses, since each module has been written by highly qualified tutors and writers, and our courses are updated on a regular basis, adding new information, methods and knowledge. You are supplied with all “essential” references. Extra books are always useful though, especially for special projects. Tutors will advise you what to buy if you decide you would like to have extra reading material, but it is not essential. Check out our eBookstore if you’re looking for a starting point.
Q. What sets the Academy apart from other institutions?
A. A unique feature of our courses is that we combine knowledge of the subject matter with practical tasks (set tasks, found at the end of each lesson). So you get to do practical components in each lesson. The benefits of this approach are immense: – your skills and knowledge are developed to a much higher level not normally found at other distance learning institutions.
Q. How do the practical exercises (set tasks) work?
A. The practical component of each lesson can be in the form of : Field Research, Networking and Analysis, Conducting Surveys, Growing, Collecting, Photographing and Processes.
Q. Can I pay by instalments?
A. Yes, you can view all available payment options here.
Q. Are there any hidden costs?
A. There are no hidden extras – the tuition fee covers all course material, unlimited tutor support, assignment marking/feedback and any text books where specified and exams. The only extras are for the public examinations fees for the ICB Bookkeeping course and the RHS (Royal Horticulture Society) exams.
Q. Are your courses up-to date?
A. Our courses are continually updated. The course content is rapidly updated and improved without the red tape and bureaucracy experienced at other educational institutions.
Q. Do you have a Cancellation policy?
A. We have a cancellation policy that is fair and equitable. For further details please click here.
Q. What Recognition do you have?
A. The Academy for Distance Learning has various forms of recognition:
These include TQUK (Training Qualifications UK) – an Ofqual Awarding Organisation – ADL is an approved TQUK Centre.
IARC – International Approval Registration Centre, approved member. Accredited Training Provider for ICB (Institute of Certified Bookkeepers) and Approved Distance Learning Provider for the RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) and many more. Our graduates come from many parts of the world and have used our qualifications for successful employment and progression onto higher education. To view our full list of recognition and memberships please click here,
Q. Will I have any opportunity to engage with other students?
A. We have a Student Community group based on facebook! If you don’t have a facebook account already, you could make one just for talking with fellow students on the group.
Q. Why should I enrol with the Academy for Distance Learning?
A. Here at the Academy our students are our priority – we treat every student as a unique individual. This philosophy allows us to nurture those who are “slow and steady” learners rather than letting them fall through the cracks, while catering for those who are in a hurry to complete.
Q. Can I study from anywhere in the world?
A. Our courses are available to anyone, anywhere in the world from the comfort of your own home. The course content is relevant to any country, culture or economy.
Q. Completing the course- how long will it take?
A. Completion of modules varies from student to student. Many factors come into play such as work commitments and family life- there are always distractions. Some students work quicker than others. For a 100 hour module many students will take up to 3- 6 months, others take less time and some are even longer. It’s all up to you. There is no pressure to complete or deadline to finish. Naturally, longer courses will take more time.
Q. What learning formats are there?
A. Your enrollment comes with the Online Classroom study option by default. For a small additional cost you also have the options of USB or Correspondence.
USB: Your course is sent to you on a USB stick, so that you can carry it in your pocket. Ideal for those with unreliable internet connections. This option is an additional £5/module
Correspondence: You download the course content and then print your own copy to your requirements. You can then bind the lessons to suit your needs.
Q. Assessment – how does it work?
A. For each 100 hour module you are assessed by assignments (at the end of each lesson) and a final one and a half hour exam (or you may elect to complete a project instead of sitting the exam) – the choice is yours – you sit for the exam in your own location, or you can visit us in Canterbury, England to sit the exam if want to. Exam fees are included in the tuition fee you paid. You can read more about the examination process here. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment. You submit it to the academy who then submits it to the tutor for marking, comments and feedback. Our policy is to have a grade for you within 5 to 7 days.
Q. How many assignments do I need to complete for each module?
A. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment – so if a course has say, 10 lessons there would be 10 assignments. The number of lessons per module varies from module to module. See the course content from our website for further details.
Q. When do I have to hand in my first assignment?
A. There is no deadline for handing in the first assignment. Submit when you are ready. There are some students who hand in assignments within the first couple of weeks of enrolment – while there are others who submit their work 6 months later. It’s all at your own convenience to suit you. Everyone has different work and home commitments and we cater to these needs.
Q. I am having difficulty attending workshops/industry meetings, what can be done?
A. If your course requires attendance at workshops, conferences, or industry meetings; alternative arrangements can be made in your country; however, there may be an additional expense. We can appoint an appropriately qualified person anywhere to work through curriculum documentation supplied by us, to satisfy the requirements set down in a course.
Q. What qualification will I receive?
A. For individual modules, you would receive a Certificate (providing you complete all assignments and the exam). If you just want to complete the assignments only, then a Letter of Achievement would be awarded. For more details on qualifications awarded please click here.
Q. Is there a next level to progress to?
A. Yes – you can progress from one module to a combination of many modules and to higher qualifications i.e. Advanced Certificates, Diplomas and Higher Advanced Diplomas. Read more about course levels here.
Q. Can I customize my diploma/higher qualification?
A. Not all educational institution’s certificates /diplomas meet everyone’s needs. The opportunity to design your own diploma at the Academy (subject to our approval) is an added bonus, not found at other colleges. It’s a very popular option and widely used by many students. You quite simply choose the appropriate number of related modules needed to complete the qualification and submit them to us for approval as a custom diploma.
Q. What do I get when I complete the course? Will I receive a transcript?
A. At the completion of a 100-hour Certificate course and providing all assignments and exam have been completed, you will receive a Certificate and Transcript. The Transcript will list your GPA. Each 100-hour module is worth 3 credit hours.
Q. Do I have to sit for an exam?
A. Exams are optional but need to be undertaken in order to receive the Certificate or higher qualification. Exams are one and a half hours long. You appoint an adjudicator (subject to our approval) to supervise the exam. You sit for the exam in your own location. Its that simple.
Q. I don’t cope well with exams – what can I do?
A. If you feel you don’t cope well with exams you may elect to undertake a Project (set by the tutor) instead of sitting the exam. Many students prefer this option as they find researching the material for the project sharpens their research skills.
Q. If I don’t sit for the Exam do I still get a qualification?
A. If you don’t sit for the exam but complete the project alternative, you will still receive your endorsed qualification. If you don’t sit for an exam or complete a final project, providing you have completed all the assignments you will be awarded a Certificate of Achievement.
Q. Do I have to sit for the exam at the Academy?
A. No – whilst you are more than welcome to come to our location in Canterbury, U.K. and sit the exam in our classroom; the more popular option is to sit for the exam in your own location. You appoint an adjudicator to supervise the exam. Click here for more information on that process.
Q. Our tutors – who are they?
A. We only employ tutors who have are currently active in their industry with at least 5 years of real-world experience. Not only are they highly qualified but also experienced, knowledgeable, and professional- experts in their chosen fields from all parts of the world.
Q. Can I contact my tutor at any time?
A. Yes- you have unlimited access to tutors. We strongly encourage students to develop a dialogue with their Tutor. This is why we encourage students to submit their first assignment fairly quickly at the beginning of the course.
Every Academy student is assigned a tutor who supports you throughout your course and beyond. Your tutor is there to guide and facilitate your learning and provides as much or as little individual contact as you would like. When you submit your coursework the tutor will give you feedback that helps you develop your ideas and provides motivation. For those who do like to have interaction with other students, the ADL discussion forum connects you to students from all over the world.
Q. How do I contact my tutor?
A. You have direct contact with your tutor by email through the Online Classroom. Alternatively, you can write, fax, email, or phone the academy. Leave a message if your tutor isn’t available and they will phone, write or fax back; whatever suits you.
Q. If I don’t understand a question or a lesson may I contact the tutor?
A. You may contact a tutor as often as you like. There is no additional charge or restriction on this service. Contact can be made via the Student Zone, email, or by phone.
Q. Practical work – How is this done?
A. To find out more about this part of the course please visit the section on How Our Courses Work here.
Excerpt From The Course
WATER VOLUMES AND DURATION
The exact procedure to determine the optimum flow rate and number of control stations for any irrigation system is impractical to define.
A general procedure to be followed is:
1) Divide the area to be irrigated into sections having similar water requirements according to plant and soil types and degree of enclosure and shading.
2) Select and design the sprinkler or other irrigation water distribution systems for all sections of the area to be irrigated, selecting tentative water application rates in ranges suitable for each section.
3) Further divide the sections decided upon in step 1 into smaller areas where necessary each requiring approximately the same water flow rate.
4) Calculate the peak daily irrigation water requirements for all sections of the irrigation area from peak monthly evaporation figures or other data where applicable.
5) Calculate the time required to apply the peak daily irrigation water requirements of each section calculated in step 4 using the tentative water application rates selected in step 2.
6) Calculate the total time required to apply the peak daily irrigation water requirements to all the sections selected in step 3.
7) Revise and refine the calculations and tentative decisions made in steps 2, 3, 5, 6 dependent on how the total daily irrigation time calculated in step 6 compares to the time available to carry out the irrigation each day.
Note: when designating your irrigation zones, bear in mind that mature plants require less water than young or establishing plants.
Also, consider that in terms of water usage efficiency, unless there are rain or other sensors built in to the system, a good system is only as good as the programmes which are set in the controller. If you do not set up your watering zones and times accurately, you may end up using more water than watering by hand.
FAQ - RHS Theory Qualifications
If you require further details about any of the RHS industry recognised qualifications please, call one of our friendly RHS Course Advisors on +44 (0)1227 789 649 or email: [email protected]
Q: When can I Enrol/Start My RHS Course With ADL?
A: Anytime, Anywhere. There are no enrolment deadlines.
Q: I live Overseas. Can I Study From Overseas?
A: You can study any of the RHS theory qualifications overseas. All courses are offered in English. You will need to email RHS Qualifications direct to arrange sitting for your examination overseas.
Q: Is There a Time Limit for Completing an RHS Qualification?
A: At present there are no time limits. However, RHS is contemplating in the future, the introduction of course time-lines.
Q: Are There Any Entry Requirements (Pre-Requisites)?
A: The RHS Theory courses do not require prerequisites, previous experience or any knowledge of horticulture. You just need passion for all things horticulture.
Q: What Course Should I Start With First? I Am New To RHS Qualifications.
A: We highly recommend that you start with Level 2 – Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance.
Q: What Does ADL Course Material Include?
A: Includes Power Point Presentations, Videos and written course lessons.
Q: When Do Exams Take Place?
A: Exams are held on fixed dates in February and June of each year. You should register as a candidate at least 3 months before these dates, so please do not leave exam registration to the last minute
Q: Where Do I Take My Exams?
A: UK: You take the exams at the RHS Wisley Centre, located between Cobham and Ripley in Surrey or at other authorised RHS centres around the UK.
Overseas: please email RHS qualifications direct for centre information.
Q: Exam Pass Marks?
A: Module – pass 50%. Commendation 70%.
Qualification: 50% pass for all modules.
Commendation awarded for all modules.
Each question carries a value of 10 marks.
Q: I’m Not Happy With My Exam Results?
A: You have the opportunity to re-sit your exam at the next opportunity.
There are no restrictions on the number of re-sits you can take. The highest mark you achieve will remain.,