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Irrigation in Submountain Semi-Desert


Development of complex irrigation technology for jointed cultivation of horticultural and agricultural crops under farm conditions in submountain semi-desert, Issyk Kul region

Tech Area / Field

  • AGR-OTH/Other/Agriculture

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
Vzaimoponimanie Association Non-Govenment Organization, Kyrgyzstan, Bishkek


  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, USA, CA, Livermore

Project summary

The problem of farming management in dry, low water supply regions is actual in many countries all over the world (South of USA, Spain, Africa, Central Asia, the Middle East etc). One of regular example is a submontain, rocky semi-desert of west Issyk-Kul region in Kyrgyz Republic.

The Issyk-Kul region occupies 43.1 thousands km2 (including 6.2 thousands km2 water area of Issyk-Kul Lake).

The main population resides on territory around 15 thousands km2 bordering to the Issyk-Kul Lake on south and north foothills of Kungey-Alatoo and Terskey Alatoo mountain ranges with 1650-2000 meters height above sea level. The development of this region is a basic priority for Kyrgyzstan. As per natural conditions the east near-shore zone of the Issyk-Kul Lake is completely differ from west one. There are many water recourses providing agricultural development and higher living standards in north-east, east and south-east zones of region.

Having 100 mm average annual fall-outs the west side lands are mostly rocky, submontan semi-deserts with 120 thousands rural populations where further development depends on level of land-reclamation.

The main sources of profit are cattle-breeding and gardening. Having a large farm ground areas (from units up to dozens hectares) it does not provide required living standards of population due to its low profitability. The main reasons are low land fertility and lack of comprehensive irrigation technologies adapted to natural conditions in concerned region.

The best approach to improve land fertility without extra expenses is a permanent agricultural utilization. Taking into account the regional priorities the one of prospective way is a jointed cultivation technology applied for horticultural and agricultural crops on common area. Above technology required appropriate irrigation technology.

Within the framework of limited water recourses and low-powered soil typical for project implementation zone we can use drip irrigation for orchards and low-intensive overhead irrigation for crops. Both technologies have been tested in region and proved its productivity and ecologic validity. However it is still applied separately due to lack of coincidence between application objects. Technology implementation was conducted on base of different elements where their application for horticultural and agricultural crops increased cost of technologies owing to a low profitability.

Moreover in compare with drip irrigation the low-intensive overhead irrigation was not tested with standard elements. Based on earlier works we have developed implementing facilities of low-intensive overhead irrigation using simple standard and non-standard elements are accessible for farmers.

Considering the site of jointed cultivation as a unified object we need a complex irrigation system on one elemental base due to limited water resources providing necessary irrigation technology for horticultural and agricultural crops.

The main goals of this project are development and production testing of complex irrigation technology.

To implement project it is proposed to archive the following objectives:

  1. Basing on analysis of existing regional separate cultivation technologies for horticultural and cultivated crops we need to develop technology of jointed cultivation on one site. As per development results received on farm in submontain rocky semi-desert of west cost of the Issyk-Kul Lake we plan to establish a pilot production site occupied 2-3 hectares with further technology testing.
  2. Using experience of development and testing of drip irrigation and low-intensive overhead irrigation technologies including results of jointed cultivation technology it is proposed to work out necessary elements and complex irrigation system for pilot site.
  3. To make and test developed system in implement’s capacity of required irrigation technology.
  4. To carry out republican and Central Asian presentation of project results due to its profitability.

The weapon specialists will be enlisted to necessary services to archive project objectives.

We plan to use computer design in technological and hydraulic processes as well as designing of non-standard elements of irrigation system, wide application of standard elements and unit assembly. The main technology implementation standards for jointed cultivation of horticultural and agricultural crops will be served based on the following points:

  • ecologic validity;
  • simple implementation and maintenance;
  • wide use of batch work pieces of irrigation system’s elements;
  • accessibility for prospective consumer;
  • simple duplication;
  • commercial potential.

This project meets all requirements of the ISTC. The project will help to redirect approach to actual problems in agricultural area both in Kyrgyzstan and whole Central Asian region involving group of weapon specialists in amount of 8 persons (59% from the total number of persons * days). Having a great commercial potential the natural and economic conditions of project implementation zone and problems of new industrial relations in farming area are typical in Central Asian region.

A leading ecology specialist from Lorens Livermore National Laboratory (USA) has agreed to be Collaborator of project with further participation in project results discussions and possible providing of advices.

“Mutual understanding” Association has been chosen as a leading institution of project due to appropriate regulations’ activities and structure required to implement international projects (in compare with government authorities). The association provides a legal status for creative groups of specialists for the period of scientific-technical and humanitarian projects’ implementation.


The International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) is an intergovernmental organization connecting scientists from Kazakhstan, Armenia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Georgia with their peers and research organizations in the EU, Japan, Republic of Korea, Norway and the United States.


ISTC facilitates international science projects and assists the global scientific and business community to source and engage with CIS and Georgian institutes that develop or possess an excellence of scientific know-how.

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