Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Going Bananas in the DR

Earlier this spring, Dr. Terry Podmore traveled down to the Dominican Republic to visit local banana plantations. Bananas are a steady source of income in the area, but production is limited by the amount of water that the farmers can access - some can only water their crops one or two days per week. The current methods of surface irrigation, referred to locally as “flood irrigation," are probably inefficient in their use of water, since these methods typically have low application efficiency unless carefully managed.  Dr. Podmore is an experienced irrigation professional with expertise in irrigation technologies and training of growers to improve water use in order to counteract the effects of global warming and the need for increased water supplies. While in-country, Dr. Podmore put his knowledge to good use visiting several farms and conducting farmer trainings.

Check out these photos from Dr. Podmore's time in the field! 

Inspecting water pump capabilities

The farmers interviewed almost universally stated that 
shortage of water was their primary concern in the dry season

Water availability for agriculture in the DR is 
limited by poor irrigation techniques

Dr. Podmore inspecting banana plants

Dr. Podmore working with banana producers

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