Reducing Chlorides in Your Irrigation Water

Applications_02_Agriculture_MedRes

The life of a harvest plant is quite delicate; therefore certain conditions have to be met in order to foster a healthy crop. Growers are all too familiar with the factors that vastly affect the success of plant growth. Some of those factors include but are not limited to; humidity, temperature and lighting. The condition of these factors can greatly influence plant growth, but one important factor that cannot be overlooked is the water quality. Water will immensely alter the growth of a plant and can severely affect a crops harvest yield. Water quality is what contributes to transpiration in plants and is a major component in the photosynthesis process. Without pure water, plants cannot carry nutrients throughout their system nor create life sustaining glucose.

With that in mind, we can better understand the importance of water quality. Water being one of the most important factors in a plant’s growth, cannot be ignored. A common problem that growers experience and must keep in mind when choosing a water treatment system is the cost of water. Large plantations or growing operations require large amounts of water. The rising cost of water can severely influence the growers overall potential for profitability. One option for the grower is the use of municipal city water, but rising operating costs have forced municipalities to increase pricing over the years. In response to the rising costs of city water, growers are resorting to drilling their own wells. This may solve one problem, but it gives rise to a potential new problem, the quality of water the well will produce.

Well water is typically referred to as brackish water due to its high levels of contaminants versus municipally treated water. Well water will have run through countless mineral deposits and will be saturated with high mineral content and other impurities that are detrimental to a plants health. Typically, water derived from a well is high in sodium chloride “salts”. Sodium will retain water in the soil, producing arid conditions, and consequently impeding the absorption of nutrients by the plants. Chlorides on the other hand, are highly soluble in water and can be absorbed by plants which can cause damaging effects. High levels of chlorides in plants will become toxic and can result in stunted discolored foliage, leaf scorch, and twig dieback.

So what is an effective solution for growers? With its efficiency and reliability, reverse osmosis will solve the water quality issues that most growers are faced with. The strong dense polymer membranes in reverse osmosis systems can filter out impurities with ease. Inside the membrane housing, controlled levels of pressure are applied to the feed water, forcing water through the membranes. This separates the impurities from the water, resulting in highly purified product water.

Reverse osmosis remains one of the most efficient and economical forms of water treatment, when attempting to reduce levels of sodium chloride “table salt” and impurities. Reverse osmosis allows growers to use personal water sources without the worry or hassle of poor water quality. Reverse osmosis is beneficial to the agriculture industry as it allows for lower levels of contaminants and the controlled injection of nutrients insuring an increase in production which equates to a quicker return on the growers investment into reverse osmosis.