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|Title: ||Effect of low-cost irrigation methods on microbial contamination of lettuce irrigated with untreated wastewater|
|Authors: ||Keraita, Bernard|
|Keywords: ||Low cost irrigation methods|
|Issue Date: ||2007|
|Publisher: ||Tropical Medicine and International Health|
|Citation: ||Tropical Medicine and International Health volume 12 suppl. 2 pp 15–22 december 2007|
|Abstract: ||objective To assess the effectiveness of simple irrigation methods such as drip irrigation kits, furrow
irrigation and use of watering cans in reducing contamination of lettuce irrigated with polluted water in
urban farming in Ghana.
methods Trials on drip kits, furrow irrigation and watering cans were conducted with urban vegetable
farmers. Trials were arranged in a completely randomised block design with each plot having all three
irrigation methods tested. This was conducted in both dry and wet seasons. Three hundred and ninetysix
lettuce, 72 soil, 15 poultry manure and 32 water samples were analysed for thermotolerant coliforms
and helminth eggs.
results Lettuce irrigated with drip kits had the lowest levels of contamination, with, on average, 4 log
units per 100 g, fewer thermotolerant coliforms than that irrigated with watering cans. However, drip
kits often got clogged, required lower crop densities and restricted other routine farm activities. Watering
cans were the most popular method. Using watering cans with caps on outlets from a height
<0.5 m reduced thermotolerant coliforms by 2.5 log units and helminthes by 2.3 eggs per 100 g of
lettuce compared with using watering cans without caps from a height >1 m.
conclusion Simple, cheap and easily adoptable irrigation methods have great potential to reduce crop
contamination in low-income areas. When used in combination with other on-farm and post-harvest risk
reduction measures, these will help to comprehensively reduce public health risks from using polluted
water in vegetable farming.|
|Description: ||An article published by Tropical Medicine and International Health volume 12 suppl. 2 pp 15–22 december 2007|
|Appears in Collections:||College of Science|
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