Pema Gatshel’s Chhimung village adopts smart irrigation to boost efficiency in agriculture

The lack of manpower in agricultural farming is a growing issue in most rural villages. Young people leave their villages, leaving the elderly to tend to the farm work. To reduce the workload on farmers, the Pema Gatshel District Agriculture Sector installed smart irrigation technology in a mega greenhouse in Chhimung village. Farmers no longer have to carry water or drag pipes to irrigate their crops in the greenhouse.

The smart irrigation technology offers two options. Users can either operate the drip irrigation system using their mobile phones or manually turn on the water pump machine if the network is unreliable.

Members of the vegetable group in the village are delighted to have this smart irrigation technology installed in their greenhouse.

Villagers say the technology will help them use scarce water in the village efficiently.

“We no longer have to pull water pipes. The system releases water drop by drop efficiently. Now, we supply water to our crops on time, which will help us harvest them on time,” said Metsi Zangmo, a vegetable group member.

“The machine shuts off automatically when the tank becomes empty. We hope it will benefit us from now on,” said Nidup Zangmo, another vegetable group member.

The farmers say it is difficult to water the large greenhouse manually. They said manual watering also reduces yield and damages crops.

“We do not have enough water. We used to carry it from nearby houses to use here. Most of the time, we collect rainwater and depend on it,” said Nidup Zangmo, also a vegetable group member.

“When we water manually, we have to drag the pipe from place to place since the water cannot reach everywhere from one spot. This process damages the chillies and other vegetables,” said Metsi Zangmo.

The technology was recently installed with funding from the United Nations Development Programme’s Japan Supplementary Budget.

The ARDC Wengkhar office in Monggar provided technical assistance for the installation.

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