Underground irrigation technology has helped 100 farmers in Tunisia to continue farming during droughts. It is dubbed the Buried Diffuser and this technology utilizes half the amount of water that drip irrigation needs, while raising yields 3 to 5 times. It also ensures that no water is lost through evaporation.

Developed by Chahbani Technologies of Tunisia, the buried diffuser technology comes in three forms, for irrigating trees, vegetables and container plants.

In Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Greece, California, and France, it’s being used to irrigate olive, date palm, fig citrus, pistachio, almond and peach trees, grape vines and all kinds of vegetables, says the buried diffuser innovator, and founder of Chahbani Technologies, Dr Bellachheb Chahbani.

The buried diffuser typically consists of a 6 millimetre diameter flexible tube connected to a 16 to 20 millimetre diameter polyethylene high-density pipe. The whole diffuser set up is then buried in holes below the soil surface, next to the roots of trees and plants needing irrigation. Only the distribution water pipe that connects to the main reservoir and the flexible tube is visible on the ground.

According to Dr Chahbani buried diffusers can be added to established trees and plants or to those freshly planted, says cleanleap.com.