Newswise — August 22, 2022 – Rainfall and other water sources are essential for a high crop yield and bountiful crop production. However, there can be too much of a good thing.  The August 22nd Sustainable, Secure Food Blog explains the importance of drain tiles in removing excess water from saturated soils.

Drain tiles are perforated, plastic pipes that are buried in the ground at a shallow depth, usually 3 to 4 feet below the surface in an agricultural field. The tiles are installed using a trenching machine that forms the trench, and then places the drain tile at a precise depth and slope across the field.

According to blogger Eileen J. Kladivko, drain tiles work when the soil is saturated above the depth of the drain tiles. When water flows into the perforations in the plastic tube, gravity causes a flow down the slope and into a ditch or stream. Without drain tiles, some of the most productive soils in the Midwest and other parts of the world would not produce the high crop yields that they do.

By having drain tiles in the field, farmers are more assured that crops can be planted on a timely basis and will grow well and use the inputs the farmer applies. This provides better economics to the farmer and consumer, and better environmental protection from the efficient use of inputs applied to the field.

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About us: This blog is sponsored and written by members of the American Society of Agronomy and Crop Science Society of America. Members are researchers and trained, certified professionals in the areas of growing the world’s food supply while protecting the environment. Members work at universities, government research facilities, and private businesses across the United States and the world.