|A small reservoir that stores irrigation water in Phan Thiet City’s Tien Thanh Commune in Binh Thuan Province.
In Phan Thiet City’s Tien Thanh Commune, many dragon fruit orchards have sufficient water from the ponds and reservoirs that were built.
Tran Van Nga, who has a 3ha dragon fruit orchard in Tien Thanh’s Tien Hoa Hamlet, dug two ponds to store irrigation water and installed a spray irrigation system.
He harvests rainwater during the rainy season and stores it in two ponds, which cover an area of 100sq.m each, for irrigating dragon fruit in the dry season.
The spray system saves irrigation water and labour costs and time, compared to traditional irrigation methods, Nga said.
Tien Thanh Commune has hilly terrain and sandy soil and has no public irrigation system, so farmers rely mostly on rainwater.
Mai Duc Tien, deputy chairman of the Tien Thanh Farmers' Association, said that farmers had dug ponds and built small reservoirs to store water.
The commune has about 300 households growing a total of 400ha of dragon fruit and all have built ponds and small reservoirs in their orchards.
In other drought - affected districts like Ham Thuan Nam and Ham Tan, farmers have dug ponds, built small reservoirs and applied other methods to cope with drought.
The province, which is the country’s largest dragon fruit producer, has faced a record drought over the past 10 years, causing severe water shortages in many farming areas as many rivers and springs have been depleted.
The province’s irrigation reservoirs had about 11.2 million cubic metres of water as of May 23, or 4.3 per cent of their designed capacity, according to the province’s People’s Committee.
The province had to stop growing the 2019 - 20 winter - spring crop on 13,000ha to save water for household use and animal husbandry.
The province only grew 23,800ha of crops in the 2019 - 20 winter - spring crop. In the ongoing summer – autumn crop, the province is growing only 12,000ha of crops because of drought.
The province has coped with drought by dredging irrigation canals and establishing more temporary public pumping stations. It has also dug more wells and ponds, and built temporary dams to store irrigation water. VNS
Farmers have been still struggling to maintain agricultural production during prolonged hot weather in the coastal central province of Ninh Thuan.
Warned about serious drought this year, provinces in the western part of the southern region have spent hundreds of billion dong to build fresh water reservoirs. But this is just a temporary solution.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc recently had a working session with localities declaring an emergency because of drought and saline intrusion in Mekong Delta, including Long An, Tien Giang, Ben Tre, Kien Giang and Ca Mau.