News and knowhow for farmers

Superior spraying tech tames water loss

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Ugandan farmers are set to benefit from a new spraying technology that saves the amount of water used by over five times ultimately saving time and inputs. The spray pump which is a technology from Balton Ugandan an agro input company is dubbed magic disk spray pump. It seeks to replace the conventional spray pumps that demand more time and resources to accomplish spraying works on the farm.

This is an advanced technology that is designed to address the farmers’ plights originating from the use of the conventional nozzle spray pumps. The pump which from a distance resembles the conventional ones has technological improvements that make it more efficient during spraying. It’s fitted with a telescopic pipe that is fitted at the end with a hood. While spraying crops, the hood helps in being exact and targeting the weeds while at the same time protecting the crops.

According to Paddy Kisembo an agronomist from Balton Uganda, this trait is very good especially while using the non selective weed killers. “The non selective weed killers are always known to be more effective than the selective ones. However, if not handled well, then they end up killing the crops too. Therefore this hood protects the crops,” explained Kisembo.

The base of the telescopic pipe is fitted with a disk sprayer. When the water is pumped during the spraying process, the pressure from the water makes the disk to rotate. In the process, the area under spray is broadened through the increased radius of the water from the disk hence allowing coverage of a bigger area. This disc works exactly like the sprinkler irrigation system whose ability to rotate increases the area under irrigation. “In fact it has an estimated three metres spray swath,” added Kisembo.

This is unlike the normal spraying pump that is fitted with a nozzle that sprays a smaller area. Kisembo noted that the increased radius of spray using the disk pump technology enhances input and water conservation. A farmer will require one 20 litre can to spray an acre while using this technology. On the contrary, the use of the conventional spraying will demand over five 20 litre pumps. While using the pump for spraying the farm with selective or non lethal inputs, then the hood is removed to increase the effectiveness of the disk and spray swath distance. The telescopic pipe is adjustable and therefore allaying fears for chemical or water splash on the person spraying.

The pumps cost about Ush180000 a price that is slightly higher than the usual pumps. “The current price for the conventional pumps is about Ush150000 and given the benefits that these new pumps bring to the farmer, the slight difference is logical” Already farmers are opting for the new pumps with Kisembo noting that although they have not done any advertisement about them, they have so far sold over 1000 units since early January 2015 when they introduced them in the country.

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