Irrigation/water management schools planned for 2019

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Fast facts

No cost to attend Multiple Inlet Rice Irrigation school.

Surge and senor schools held on request, contact local extension office.

Arkansas crop producers who want to get a better handle on their water use in the 2019 growing season will have several opportunities through a series of irrigation/water management schools.

“The schools are small group with short instruction and include practical exercises,” said Chris Henry, associate professor and water management engineer for the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.

The first school for is for rice farmers who are using or wish to use Multiple Inlet Rice Irrigation on difficult fields. The school teaches how to use the Rice Irrigation mobile app to plan MIRI in fields. The school will also show how to use levee survey programs and tractor GPS equipment to create the levee files for the plan.

“We finally have a tool that allows anyone with a mobile device to design the most complex fields for MIRI at the lowest cost in a matter of minutes,” Henry said.

MIRI schools run from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. They will be held:

Jan. 7 – ALICIA -- Arnold and Jacobs Store, 117 US Hwy 67

Feb. 12 – McCRORY - McCrory Civic Center, 103 North Edmonds

Feb. 27 – BRINKLEY – Tri-County Farmers North Plant, 310 Grand Ave

Support for the school is being provided by the U.S. Forest Service and the Natural Resource Conservation Service. There is no cost for the school.

Surge/Soil Moisture Sensor Schools

The Division of Agriculture irrigation team will also be hosting Surge and Soil Moisture Sensor Schools, which will cover use, layout and programming of surge valves for different soil types and conditions. The schools are being offered as requested.

The schools also provides the participants the basics of soil moisture sensors and how to use them to schedule irrigation. Participants will make a set of Watermark™ sensors in the school and are provided a slide hammer installation tools and a manual reader which are used in the school.

The cost of the school is $500, which includes four sensors, a slide hammer installation tool and a manual reader for those that do not have the tools needed to use sensors. The industry has provided a deep discount on the supplies need to get started with sensors, so that participants can get the tools they need to use sensors effectively for irrigation.

“The school is designed for those that want to use sensors in 2019, and we will prepare participants with all of the items needed so they can walk out the door and install and use sensors on their farm,” Henry said.

The number of participants for each school is limited to 15-20 people. To have a school hosted in your area, contact your county extension office.

This school is being supported by the Arkansas Corn and Grain Sorghum Board, Arkansas Soybean Promotion Board, and the Natural Resource Conservation Service.

For more information about these irrigation schools, contact your county extension office. For a list of offices, see

About the Division of Agriculture

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system.

The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action institution. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need materials in another format, please contact 479-575-4607 as soon as possible. Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay.

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