Irrigation is the artificial application of water to the land or soil. It is used to assist in the growing of agricultural crops, maintenance of landscapes, and revegetation of disturbed soils in dry areas and during periods of inadequate rainfall. Additionally, irrigation also has a few other uses in crop production, which include protecting plants against frost, suppressing weed growth in grain fields and preventing soil consolidation.In contrast, agriculture that relies only on direct rainfall is referred to as rain-fed or dryland farming.
Irrigation systems are also used for dust suppression, disposal of sewage, and in mining. Irrigation is often studied together with drainage, which is the natural or artificial removal of surface and sub-surface water from a given area.
Drip irrigation, is an irrigation method that saves water and fertilizer by allowing water to drip slowly to the roots of plants, either onto the soil surface or directly onto the root zone, through a network of valves, pipes, tubing, and emitters.
Irrigation sprinklers are sprinklers providing irrigation to vegetation, or for recreation, as a cooling system, or for the control of airborne dust. The sprinkler system irrigates the field and thus it is widely used in sandy areas as it checks the wastage of water through seepage and evaporation.
Surface irrigation is defined as the group of application techniques where water is applied and distributed over the soil surface by gravity.