Couldn’t make it to Irrigation Show this year? We’ve got you covered. Growing is on the ground, covering everything you need to know at the show. At the end of each day, we curate the top five moments from the busy day’s events — from announcements at press conferences to inspiring advice and interesting facts from educational sessions. Here are some of the top moments from Wednesday, Dec. 7.

Natalio Mendez, Irrigation Show 2016

Photo: Yelena Tischenko

1. Irrigation as an Alternative to Gridling

Irrigation can be used as an alternative method to gridling, which can kill trees if done improperly, says Natalio Mendez, graduate student at California State University, Fresno. Did you know? California produces approximately 34 percent of the United States’ total citrus on 267,900 acres.

From the session “Effect of RDI on Quality and Economic Yield of Navel Oranges” with Natalio Mendez, California State University, Fresno

2. A Smartphone App for Scheduling Irrigation

SmartIrrigation Strawberry App

Need help with your irrigation schedules? If you’re a grower in Georgia or Florida, there may be an app for that. The SmartIrrigation apps are designed to help generate irrigation schedule recommendations based on real-time weather and short-term forecasted data. They currently have Citrus, Strawberry, Avocado and Vegetable apps available, with Blueberry and Soybean apps coming soon. For other markets, they also have Turf and Cotton apps. These apps are available to download on Apple and Android. On the website, each app has a description about the commodity and explains which equations it uses to calculate irrigation scheduling. Learn more at

– From the session, “A Smartphone App for Scheduling Irrigation in Cotton” with George Vellidis, Professor of Crop & Soil Sciences at the University of Georgia.

3. Demand for Water Projected to Double by 2050

Peter McCornick, PhD, PE, D.WRE, water, environment and agricultural specialist and keynote speaker at the Irrigation Show, said demand for water from agriculture is projected to double by 2050. A billion people in the world are food-insecure. Many also lack sufficient reliable water to meet their needs. Forty-four percent of global food production is produced by ground water, of which 33 percent is from nonrenewable sources. Further development of irrigation, to address food security and generate economic growth, is a priority in a number of regions. There needs to be the political will, financing, capacity, educational/mentoring resources, research, market, transportation and technology.

4. The Productive Central Valley

Did you know? The Central Valley of California is one of the most agriculturally productive regions in the world, according to Dr. Dong Wang, research leader at the USDA.

– From the session, “Infrared Thermometry for Deficit Irrigation of Peach Trees” with speaker Dr. Dong Wang, USDA-ARS.

5. Becoming a Better Listener

Cliff Woodbury, Irrigation Show 2016Cliff Woodbury, senior vice president of culture and engagement for Ewing Irrigation & Landscape Supply, spoke about how to become a better listener. Why? To understand, build trust, be heard, and get better results from your employees, friends or customers. Follow these five powerful tips outlined by Woodbury to become a more empathetic listener.

  1. Repeat
  2. Rephrase
  3. Reflect feelings
  4. Rephrase content and reflect feelings
  5. Discern when empathic listening is appropriate


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