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20130920-OC-LSC-0615 | by USDAgov
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Kirby Farms third-generation family farm in Mechanicsville, VA, uses micro irrigation (drip watering) and plastic mulch (row covering) to efficiently grow green zucchini squash, on Friday, Sept 20, 2013. Water is pumped through a filtration/regulator system to flexible distribution pipes and hard connectors. Emitter hoses can be driven in where needed. Pressurized hoses emit water at a very slow rate near the base of the plants. Computers or timers provide additional controls. A micro irrigation system, also known as drip or trickle irrigation, is used to water directly to the plant root zone utilizing surface or subsurface applicators. For more information please see

Plastic sheeting is a form of mulch. It conserves soil moisture and reduces energy

use associated with irrigation, moderates soil temperature, provide erosion control, suppresses weed growth, facilitates the establishment of vegetative cover, improves soil quality, and reduces airborne particulates. For more information, please see

For more information about this farm operation, please see the photoset description at For information about the USDA, please go to USDA photo by Lance Cheung.


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Taken on September 20, 2013