This piece explores irrigation systems, specifically center pivot irrigation systems, and how they contribute to water conservation efforts in agriculture. The painting in the top left depicts a plant in its early stages of growing with the title of the piece, Water Saving in Agriculture. In the top right is a depiction of center pivot irrigation systems, which are used to produce crops pictured in the painting on the bottom left: russet potatoes, red potatoes, chipping potatoes, sweet corn, snap beans, kidney beans, and carrots, all of which are studied in Yi Wang’s research program. The painting on the bottom right is an interpretation of variable rate irrigation systems maps, which monitor the parts of each circular plot that require more or less water, and denote those rates of irrigation with different colors. The plots are a circular shape because the irrigation system sits at a fixed point in the center of the circle and rotates around the plots to deposit water. Yi and I wanted to highlight the various aspects of this process through which important crops to Wisconsin agriculture are produced. Altogether, this piece describes how water saving technology is evolving to meet the agricultural needs of the state.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Melina Nguyen is a first-year undergraduate student double-majoring in Political Science and Environmental Studies at UW-Madison. She has enjoyed creating art as a hobby for many years and more recently picked up painting, using acrylics and watercolors as mediums. This is Melina’s first collaborative piece, and she is grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the Flow Project.
ABOUT THE Water Partner
Yi Wang is an assistant professor at UW-Madison and state extension specialist with a research focus on potato and vegetable sustainable production. The goal of her research and extension program is to conduct science-based applied research, and collaborate with the potato and vegetable growers and processors to improve the resource (including water and fertilizer) use efficiency and sustainability of vegetable cropping systems in Wisconsin.