Application in tea fields
SAP polymer was introduced to us when we were doing consultation for a tea plantation who was looking to combat the drought. The plantation historically had consistent rain through the year, but with recent climate changes, the rain had become infrequent, negatively affecting their yield.
After testing several irrigation methods and yielding limited results, we experimented with the SAP polymer. The SAP polymer was used in conjunction with a liquid fertilizer, to test the SAP’s capabilities in acting as a slow release for the liquid fertilizer.
How was the SAP polymer applied?
The SAP polymer was applied as a hydrogel, which means that they were soaked in water before application. A trench was dug at several spots around the planting area to serve as water reservoirs in periods of drought as it was too labor intensive to bury it at the base of every tree.
The trial product good results and was observed to reduce the impact of fertilizer wash off when torrential rain occurred. We found that the SAP polymer was very effective in retaining fertilizer during heavy rains (reduced leeching) and retaining water during the dry season as the tea trees in the trial produce more consistent yields, despite the drastic weather changes.