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RedR TSS

The system works on the basis that crops needing the most year-round water and year to year are grown nearest the source ( palm trees). When there is sufficient water in the system alfalfa etc are grown next, and wheat at the end in the best years, as you outline. The distribution is complex and involves rented and owned water on the weekly or half weekly basis, but is naturally geared to the seasonal and annual fluctuations in water table levels, so there is never over abstraction. I think the best way to make it more flexible might be to construct a ground storage tank to take some of the the amount allocated by right or rental and use it when it is wanted for trickle or other irrigation but that would then need a pump on the tank. Answer would depend on the resources of the families concerned and the size of the falaj flow. A small elevated tank connected via a pump to a ground storage tank would let them irrigate by gravity in small quantities at night or day for drip or even sprinkler irrigation for vegetables if they want more than weekly irrigation and greater efficiency. Previously people tended to make gardens beyond the falaj lands and dig a well for vegetables but protection zones may now make that a problem? Since distribution channels do leak and trees are often over-watered another option might be to dig a well in the groves to re-capture some of the wasted water? Channel water losses can be reduced in smaller falajes by a) putting a cistern at the top end of the open section and/or b) laying plastic sheet along the channel.floor (cheapest option). I am happy to help if I can be of any assistance, but you have probably thought of these solutions!, Where in Oman? I worked for 4 years on and down aflaj including on water losses and irrigation efficiency there and would be interested to know how they are working now.
Best wishes Sally Sutton