Mountain irrigation, Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain

Efficient irrigation management in Extremadura

Within the Agros Strategy of CICYTEX (Center for Scientific and Technological Research of Extremadura), the REFEX project is being carried out, financed by the Forestry and Rural World Department of the Regional Government of Extremadura through the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) of the European Union. Its objective is the transfer of good irrigation practices resulting from consolidated research work to promote the efficient management of irrigated lands in Extremadura.  

CITYTEX implements the projects and plays a key role in the coordination of professionals, companies, entities and research centers involved in the development of each of them. 

Mountain irrigation in the north of Caceres

SPHERAG will provide its services from 2022 in one of the REFEX project actions., focused on improving cherry tree cultivation and irrigation practices in the mountainous environment of the north of the province of Cáceres. In this area there is a great variability of soil conditions and climatology, which complicates the calculation of the water needs of the trees by farmers. It is also an environment that is particularly vulnerable to climate change.  

The project begins with a detailed study that takes into account soil data and data obtained from sensors and agroclimatic stations. This integrated approach makes it possible to define customized irrigation strategies for cherry tree cultivation, adapted to the specific conditions of each plot. 

SPHERAG provides our disruptive technology for the optimization of irrigation water. The collection of real-time information through sensors in the field allows farmers and project technicians to know the irrigation needs at all times and for each of the farms, allowing a precise supply of water and phytosanitary products, maximizing efficiency and sustainability in water management.

Preliminary results and future outlook

Although the final results of the project are expected throughout 2024, preliminary metrics already reveal substantial improvements. The reduction of water stress in the trees translates into better fruit quality, characterized by a larger caliber and, consequently, a higher sale price, which increases the profitability of the farms involved in the project.   

Scientific research, institutional support and technological innovation converge in the REFEX project to promote efficiency and sustainability in mountain irrigation in the north of Cáceres, establishing a reference model for the management of this type of crop in other regions.