irrigational, adj.
/ir'i gay"sheuhn/, n.
1. the artificial application of water to land to assist in the production of crops.
2. Med. the flushing or washing out of anything with water or other liquid.
3. the state of being irrigated.
[1605-15; < L irrigation- (s. of irrigatio). See IRRIGATE, -ION]

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Artificial supply of water to land, to maintain or increase yields of food crops, a critical element of modern agriculture.

Irrigation can compensate for the naturally variable rate and volume of rain. Water is pumped from natural ponds, lakes, streams, and wells; basin systems and dams hold back larger streams and annual floods. Below the dam, gates to concrete-lined canals are opened, conveying the water over the land through gravity flow. More elaborate, expensive canals flow from huge constructed reservoirs, which hold a year-round water supply. Today portable irrigation systems of lightweight aluminum pipe are in wide use. Drip irrigation, a newer method, uses narrow tubing to supply water directly to the base of each plant. Agricultural irrigation, water towers, and machines invented to lift and distribute water are ancient innovations. Early Egyptians were irrigating with Nile River water by 5000 BC, and such other ancient civilizations as Babylon and China seem to have developed largely as a result of irrigation-based agriculture.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • irrigation — [ irigasjɔ̃ ] n. f. • XVe; lat. irrigatio 1 ♦ Méd. Action de faire couler de l eau (sur une partie malade, une plaie). 2 ♦ (1764) Cour. Arrosement artificiel des terres en déviant les eaux douces (⇒ arrosage). Canaux, rigoles d irrigation.… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Irrigation — Ir ri*ga tion, n. [L. irrigatio: cf. F. irrigation.] The act or process of irrigating, or the state of being irrigated; especially, the operation of causing water to flow over lands, for nourishing plants. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Irrigation — (v. lat.), 1) Bewässerung; 2) Tropfbad, Donche, s.u. Bad C) b) bb) …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Irrigation — (lat.), Anfeuchtung, Bewässerung …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Irrigation — (lat.), Bewässerung; Berieselung, auch Abspülung …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Irrigation — Irrigation, lat. dtsch., Befeuchtung; Bewässerung; irrigiren, bewässern …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • irrigation — (n.) a supplying of water to land, 1610s, from L. irrigationem (nom. irrigatio) a watering, noun of action from pp. stem of irrigare (see IRRIGATE (Cf. irrigate)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • Irrigation — For its use in viticulture, see Irrigation in viticulture. For its use in medicine, see Therapeutic irrigation. LEPA redirects here. For the airport serving Palma de Mallorca, Spain, assigned the ICAO code LEPA, see Palma de Mallorca Airport.… …   Wikipedia

  • Irrigation — L’irrigation est l opération consistant à apporter artificiellement de l’eau à des végétaux cultivés pour en augmenter la production, et permettre leur développement normal en cas de déficit d eau induit par un déficit pluviométrique, un drainage …   Wikipédia en Français

  • irrigation — (i rri ga sion ; en vers, de cinq syllabes) s. f. 1°   Arrosement des prés, des terres, par l eau d une rivière, d un ruisseau, etc. qu on y amène à l aide de diverses dispositions. Canaux d irrigation. 2°   En chirurgie, arrosement d une partie… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

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