Irrigation Equipment Brand or Local Dealer
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Pete Phillips
1M ago
Irrigation Equipment Brand or Local Dealer Which is more important?   If your farm is looking to make a major investment in irrigation equipment, do you follow the major brand with the established reputation, or do you select the local dealer that you know provides excellent service?  It would be easy if the big brand and the good local dealer worked together. Like many decisions, one simple answer is not the best for each of us.  We have different needs, abilities, and expectations as well as financial situations.  The best answer will come from research, self-evaluation ..read more
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Water Sources for Center Pivot Irrigation Systems
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Pete Phillips
5M ago
Water Sources for Center Pivot Irrigation Systems   Center Pivot Irrigation Systems require a good water supply both in flow rate and total gallons for a season.  If you are considering irrigating 100 acres with an average of seven inches applied during the season, you will need 19,007,800 gallons of water at about 550 gallons per minute.  For a one-inch application on those 100 acres, you will use 2,715,400 gallons. We generally look to either drill a well, or pump surface water from a proximal, lake, river or stream.  Since nearly all water demands for irrigation projects ..read more
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Keeping Up with… Getting Better!
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Pete Phillips
8M ago
 Keeping Up with… Getting Better! technology Tools for EFFICIENT irrigation systems   Probably the most significant change since I entered the workforce back in 1982 has been the amount of information and means to access it.  Just the ability to locate, reproduce, move data and share it with the folks that “need-to-know things” is incredible.  Not to mention studies and trials done around the globe are available for others to share and try variations to improve producing food in their local climate.  Sometimes paring down available statistics that are most applicable i ..read more
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Houghton Lake Wastewater and Michigan Valley Irrigation
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Pete Phillips
10M ago
A WIN–WIN Project     A few years ago the Houghton Lake Wastewater Authority was struggling to apply enough wastewater and keep the phosphorous and other nutrient levels in check at two of their land application sites. Today, Valley center pivot irrigation systems designed, sold and installed by Michigan Valley Irrigation are on both sites.  Here is a quick walk-through of one project.  Josh Wolter from Michigan Valley Irrigation put together a proposal for John Hines, the Superintendent of their facilities.  The phase one plan included removing 180 ol ..read more
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Valley or Zimmatic?
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by John McGee
1y ago
Valley or Zimmatic? This is my extremely biased opinion.  My qualifications:  I went to college for theoretical physics, graduating with degrees in mechanical engineering and economics.  When I entered agribusiness, I became the first nationally certified irrigation designer for agriculture in the State of Michigan. I have had the opportunity to sell both Valley and Zimmatic pivots and have extensive experience working on irrigation systems in 15 states and three countries. I may be biased, but I know materials science, structure, and agricultural irrigation.  ..read more
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Cover Crops – Better than Bell Bottom Pants!
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Pete Phillips
1y ago
Cover Crops – Better than Bell Bottom Pants! As a young child I remember the doctor’s kid wearing bell bottom pants to school.  The style trend slowly moved towards mainstream and then went away.  The other day I saw a gal in the airport wearing bell bottoms so broad a toddler could easily hide in there.  I’m not sure there is much usefulness for this style.  It has taken about 50 years for bell bottom pants to be “groovy” again.  My grandpa used cover crops back in the 1950’s and they began to make a comeback in the early 2000’s, about 60 ye ..read more
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Profits from Dairy Farm Leachate Water
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Pete Phillips
1y ago
Profits from Dairy Farm Leachate Water Many dairy farms in Michigan have grown substantially over the past few decades in order to gain the economic benefits of scale.  Regulations have followed, along with the acronym CAFO, concentrated animal feeding operation.  One of those regulations is a required reservoir to capture runoff from outdoor surfaces that could carry nutrients from manure into ditches and streams, as well as effluent from fermenting silage piles.  The result is a significant amount of “dirty” water that needs to be field applied. Field applica ..read more
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Center Pivot Corner Arms – How Do I Cover My Corners?
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Pete Phillips
1y ago
 Center Pivot Corner Arms – How Do I Cover My Corners?  When our forefathers began mapping out the land in this great country, they chose square parcels instead of round ones.  When center pivot irrigation was developed, walking around a fixed pivot point in a circle was more efficient.  Since then, we have been trying to figure out ways to water the corners.  Although linear or straight-line systems have been developed, they are generally more costly than the center pivot system. The corner arm system has a steerable drive unit that can be guided to ex ..read more
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Spring Start Up Guide for Center Pivot Systems
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Rich Haviland
1y ago
Spring Start Up Guide for Center Pivot Systems Winters in Michigan can be tough on your irrigation systems.  Freezing and thawing, critters looking for refuge and late season mishaps long forgotten after harvest can create unwanted challenges.  A little time looking and repairing before the spring field work begins will reduce frustration and downtime when it’s time to water.   Above all else Safety First.   Electricity can be deadly and damaged structures can be dangerous. Make sure the power is off and disconnects are locked and tagged ..read more
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How can a CID (Certified Irrigation Designer) help in your irrigation system design?
Michigan Valley Irrigation
by Pete Phillips
1y ago
How can a CID (Certified Irrigation Designer) help in your irrigation system design?    A CID or Certified Irrigation Designer is uniquely qualified to help with the layout and design of an irrigation system for your farm.  Because they have completed additional training and testing in this area, they have another level of understanding and expertise.  While common sense and experience are valuable tools, going the extra mile to complete the courses and certification enables a CID to add performance and efficiency to an irrigation system designed specifically for ..read more
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