Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production

A special issue of Agriculture (ISSN 2077-0472). This special issue belongs to the section "Agricultural Water Management".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (25 June 2022) | Viewed by 52768

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Institute of Environment and Sustainable Development in Agriculture, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, China
Interests: water-saving irrigation; water and fertilizer coupling; agricultural water resources management; supplemental irrigation method; water-saving benefit assessment

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Guest Editor
Department of Irrigation and Drainage, China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research, Beijing 100048, China
Interests: evapotranspiration; irrigation scheduling; photosynthesis; yield; water use efficiency; crop model

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues, 

With the global climate change and population growth, the contradiction between the shortage of water resources and the increase in food demand has intensified. Agricultural irrigation needs to focus on the application of advanced water-saving irrigation technology and management strategies to improve agricultural water use efficiency and grain production capacity. In this context, it is particularly urgent to quantitatively reveal the response of processes driving crop water-saving and yield increase to irrigation technology and management strategies, aiming to put forward ways to improve crop yield and water use efficiency. This Special Issue invites relevant results of field measurement, model simulation, and macro strategy research on the following topics: 

  • Water-saving irrigation scheduling and management strategy;
  • Soil water, fertilizer, salt, gas, and heat coupling and field energy balance under water-saving irrigation technology;
  • The physiological response processes of evapotranspiration and crop growth under water-saving irrigation technology;
  • Technology and strategies to improve crop yield and water use efficiency in agricultural irrigation.

Prof. Dr. Jiandong Wang
Dr. Yanqun Zhang
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • water-saving irrigation technology
  • agricultural water management strategy
  • evapotranspiration
  • irrigation scheduling
  • water-fertilizer coupling
  • photosynthesis
  • yield
  • water use efficiency
  • crop model

Published Papers (20 papers)

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15 pages, 3586 KiB  
Article
Water–Pesticide Integrated Micro-Sprinkler Design and Influence of Key Structural Parameters on Performance
by Xinjian Wang, Junping Liu and Qing Zhang
Agriculture 2022, 12(10), 1532; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12101532 - 23 Sep 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2697
Abstract
The use of pergola trellis crops has led to a need for irrigation and the spraying of pesticides. Thus, a new integrated micro-nozzle was designed to provide water and pesticides. The structural parameters that affect the irrigation performance were selected based on the [...] Read more.
The use of pergola trellis crops has led to a need for irrigation and the spraying of pesticides. Thus, a new integrated micro-nozzle was designed to provide water and pesticides. The structural parameters that affect the irrigation performance were selected based on the working principle of the sprinkler. They included the outlet diameter, refractive surface angle, and the distance from the outlet plane to the refractive surface (cone hole distance). The structural parameters that affect the performance of spraying pesticide included the number of diversion chutes, nozzle diameter, and nozzle outer cone angle. The structural optimization of the water–pesticide integrated sprinkler was determined by a single-factor and a three-factors four-levels orthogonal tests. The indices used to evaluate the performance of the sprinkler were irrigation flow rate, wetted radius, and uniformity coefficient. Those used to evaluate the performance at spraying pesticides included the flow rate of spraying pesticides, spray cone angle, and relative size range of the droplets. The entropy weight and the extreme difference analytical methods were used to process the test data. The main order of the influence of key structural parameters on the irrigation performance was obtained as follows: outlet diameter, refractive surface angle, and cone hole distance. The primary and secondary order of the influence on the performance of spraying pesticide was as follows: the number of diversion chutes, angle of the outer cone of the nozzle, and nozzle diameter. The optimal combination of parameters for this water–pesticide integrated micro sprinkler was obtained as follows: outlet diameter 2.0 mm, refractive surface angle 30°, cone hole distance 1.0 d, nozzle diameter 3.0 mm, two diversion chutes, and nozzle outer cone angle 90°. The performance indices included the irrigation water flow rate 0.284 m3/h, wetted radius 4.26 m, uniformity coefficient 91.07%, flow rate of pesticides spread 0.097 m3/h, spray cone angle 121.25°, and average relative distribution span of droplets 1.18. The results provide an important theoretical basis for the practical application of sprinklers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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17 pages, 4573 KiB  
Article
Effects of Flow Path Geometrical Parameters on the Hydraulic Performance of Variable Flow Emitters at the Conventional Water Supply Stage
by Ni Gao, Yan Mo, Jiandong Wang, Luhua Yang and Shihong Gong
Agriculture 2022, 12(10), 1531; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12101531 - 23 Sep 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1467
Abstract
We created a subsurface drip irrigation (SDI)-specific variable flow emitter (VFE) that switches working stages automatically based on the inlet pressure (H) to achieve a step change in the flow rate. At working stage I (H = 0.1 MPa), namely [...] Read more.
We created a subsurface drip irrigation (SDI)-specific variable flow emitter (VFE) that switches working stages automatically based on the inlet pressure (H) to achieve a step change in the flow rate. At working stage I (H = 0.1 MPa), namely the conventional water supply stage, the VFE provided a normal flow rate (qI) of 1–2 L/h for crop irrigation. At working stage II (H > 0.1 MPa; exceeding the design pressure), VFE delivered a larger flow rate (qII). The larger qII facilitated water movement upward from the underground to the surface seedbed during the crop planting, thus ameliorating crop germination issues under SDI. We focused on the impacts of four structural parameters of the flow channel: tooth height (E), tooth spacing (B), tooth angle (A), and flow channel depth (D) on the qI and VFE-flow index (x) at working stage I. Computational fluid dynamic (CFD) simulations were conducted along with a physical laboratory test to develop VFE using computerized numerical control (CNC) technology (accuracy = 0.05 mm). Nine VFEs were designed using an L9(34) orthogonal test. The combination of tetrahedral meshing with a six-layer boundary layer and the realizable k–ε turbulence model was found suitable for CFD simulations. The standard root-mean-square error (nRMSE) of the measured and simulated qIs was a minimum of 7.4%. The four parameters influenced qIs as D > B > E > A, and the four factors influenced the xs as B > E > D > A. Based on the numerical simulation data, multiple linear regression models were constructed for the qIs and xs with four parameters when H = 0.1 MPa. Aiming for the minimum x, the optimal combination of the flow channel structural parameters corresponding to different qIs was determined by the ergodic optimization algorithm. When qI was 1.5 L/h, the optimal structural combinations were E = 1.2 mm, B = 1.8 mm, A = 42°, and D = 1 mm. The VFE with a qI of 1.5 L/h was created by CNC technology. The relative errors of the measured and predicted qIs using the regression model were −0.19–6.31%, and their nRMSE was 6.76%. Thus, optimizing the flow channel structural parameters based on a multiple linear regression model and the ergodic optimization algorithm is a highly precise theoretical base for VFE development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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17 pages, 4379 KiB  
Article
Comparison of Shuttleworth–Wallace and Dual Crop Coefficient Method for Estimating Evapotranspiration of a Tea Field in Southeast China
by Haofang Yan, Song Huang, Jianyun Zhang, Chuan Zhang, Guoqing Wang, Lanlan Li, Shuang Zhao, Mi Li and Baoshan Zhao
Agriculture 2022, 12(9), 1392; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12091392 - 5 Sep 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1670
Abstract
Determination of evaporation (E) and transpiration (T) in tea fields separately is important in developing precise irrigation scheduling and enhancing water use efficiency. In this study, the Shuttleworth–Wallace (S-W) model was applied to simulate the variations of E and [...] Read more.
Determination of evaporation (E) and transpiration (T) in tea fields separately is important in developing precise irrigation scheduling and enhancing water use efficiency. In this study, the Shuttleworth–Wallace (S-W) model was applied to simulate the variations of E and T based on the data from 2015 to 2018 in a tea field in southeast China. The dual crop coefficient (D-K) method recommended by FAO-56 was also applied to calculate E and T, using the same data set to compare with the S-W model. The measured crop coefficient (Kc) ranged from 0.43 to 1.44 with the average value was 0.90 during 1–150 DOY (days of year), and the measured Kc tended to be stable with the average value of 0.83 during 151–365 DOY in 2015. The S-W model estimated ETc with root mean square error (RMSE) and R2 of 0.45 mm d−1 and 0.97, while for the D-K method the values were 0.61 mm d−1 and 0.95. Therefore, both approaches could estimate the E and T separately in tea fields in southeast China, however, the D-K method had a slightly poorer accuracy compared to the S-W model in the estimation of ETc. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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15 pages, 3282 KiB  
Article
In Situ Measurement of Stemflow, Throughfall and Canopy Interception of Sprinkler Irrigation Water in a Wheat Field
by Haijun Liu, Jie Chang, Xiaopei Tang and Jinping Zhang
Agriculture 2022, 12(8), 1265; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12081265 - 19 Aug 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1932
Abstract
The sprinkler irrigation method has been widely used in agricultural fields due to its high water productivity and microclimate regulation traits. Quantitative analysis of the water distribution of sprinkler irrigation water by considering canopy influence is critical to evaluate crop growth and water [...] Read more.
The sprinkler irrigation method has been widely used in agricultural fields due to its high water productivity and microclimate regulation traits. Quantitative analysis of the water distribution of sprinkler irrigation water by considering canopy influence is critical to evaluate crop growth and water use efficiency. In this study, stemflow was measured by collecting the water flowing down along stems using a high-adsorption sheet, throughfall water was measured by contains placed between wheat rows, and canopy interception was measured by the mass difference of plants between before and after sprinkler irrigation during wheat anthesis and grain-filling stages in the North China Plain. The results showed that the canopy interception water was between 0.6 and 1.3 mm, with a mean of 0.9 mm per sprinkler irrigation event for a leaf area index of approximately 4. Stemflow water was linearly related to the irrigation water and approximately 30% of the irrigation water. The throughfall water was also linearly related to the irrigation water above the canopy and accounted for approximately 60% of the irrigation water. The three components of sprinkler water are weakly influenced by the plant leaf area index, wind conditions and sprinkler irrigation system layouts in this study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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18 pages, 3927 KiB  
Article
Effects of Irrigation Method and Water Flow Rate on Irrigation Performance, Soil Salinity, Yield, and Water Productivity of Cauliflower
by Abdelaziz M. Okasha, Nehad Deraz, Adel H. Elmetwalli, Salah Elsayed, Mayadah W. Falah, Aitazaz Ahsan Farooque and Zaher Mundher Yaseen
Agriculture 2022, 12(8), 1164; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12081164 - 5 Aug 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3808
Abstract
Water scarcity is a major constraint for food production, particularly in arid and semi-arid environments. In this regard, selecting the best irrigation technique is crucial to overcome water scarcity and enhance water productivity (WP) with no significant yield loss. This study [...] Read more.
Water scarcity is a major constraint for food production, particularly in arid and semi-arid environments. In this regard, selecting the best irrigation technique is crucial to overcome water scarcity and enhance water productivity (WP) with no significant yield loss. This study aimed to assess the impact of irrigation techniques of every furrow irrigation (EFI), alternate furrow irrigation (AFI), and drip irrigation (DI), as well as the flow rate, on irrigation system performance parameters, yield, water productivity of cauliflower crop and soil salinity during the two successive growing seasons of 2017/2018 and 2018/2019 under field conditions. The treatments comprised three different irrigation inflow rates: Q1 = 0.47 L/s, Q2 = 0.95 L/s, and Q3 = 1.43 L/s. For both investigated seasons, the AFI + Q3 treatment produced the best water distribution uniformity (DU) and water application efficiency (AE) of 85.10% and 72.73%, respectively, of the surface irrigation, and DI methods across the two growing seasons produced the highest DU of 95%. DI produced the highest cauliflower curd yield (18.12 Mg/fed), followed by EFI + Q3 (12.285 Mg/fed) and AFI + Q3 (11.905 Mg/fed). The maximum mean WP value of 10.6 kg/m3 was recorded with DI, followed by AFI + Q3 (6.24 kg/m3), across the two growing seasons. DI, AFI + Q3, AFI + Q2, AFI + Q1, EFI + Q3, and EFI + Q2 saved irrigation water by 32.63, 28.71, 21.22, 18.04, 10.48, and 3.18%, respectively, compared with EFI + Q1 across the two growing seasons. During both seasons, the average value using the drip irrigation system was 3.60 dS/m. Considering the annual leaching requirements of soil, climate change conditions, and fixed costs, we recommend the use of a drip irrigation system in clayey soil to produce cauliflower, followed by the use of the alternative furrow irrigation method to enable the aeration of the same soil for a lower cost. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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15 pages, 3065 KiB  
Article
Effects of Different Mulching Materials on the Grain Yield and Water Use Efficiency of Maize in the North China Plain
by Chuanjuan Wang, Jiandong Wang, Yanqun Zhang, Shanshan Qin, Yuanyuan Zhang and Chaoqun Liu
Agriculture 2022, 12(8), 1112; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12081112 - 28 Jul 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2988
Abstract
Mulches combined with drip irrigation techniques have been widely applied in China for higher yield and water use efficiency (WUE). To develop an efficient strategy that can improve maize yield and save water in the North China Plain (NCP), we conducted a two-year [...] Read more.
Mulches combined with drip irrigation techniques have been widely applied in China for higher yield and water use efficiency (WUE). To develop an efficient strategy that can improve maize yield and save water in the North China Plain (NCP), we conducted a two-year field experiment, using transparent plastic film mulching (T), black plastic film mulching (B), and straw mulching (S) and non-mulching (N) for spring maize in 2019 and summer maize in 2020, and high drip irrigation amount (H) and low drip irrigation amount (L) were also considered in 2019. We mainly studied the effects of mulches on soil water content, soil temperature, crop growth rate, grain yield, and water use efficiency (WUE). The results indicated that T and B treatment increased soil water content (SWC) and topsoil temperature. The T treatment promoted the growth rate significantly more than N treatment, by 27.7–43.4% at the early stage in two years. The grain yield under TH treatment was significantly (p < 0.05) higher than that of other treatments, by 9.8–17.4% for spring maize in 2019, and significantly (p < 0.05) higher under both TH and BH than under NH, by 8.9% and 4.7% for summer maize in 2020. There was a significant quadratic parabola relationship between ET and grain yield in 2019, and the correlation between SEAT of 0–10 cm soil depth with grain yield or with biomass was positive. These results indicate that the transparent plastic film with high drip irrigation amount treatment (TH) can be recommended for spring maize, and both transparent and black film mulch treatments (TH and BH) can be recommended for summer maize in the NCP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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21 pages, 9814 KiB  
Article
Experimental Study on Droplet Characteristics of Rotating Sprinklers with Circular Nozzles and Diffuser
by Jian Wang, Zhuoyang Song, Rui Chen, Ting Yang and Zuokun Tian
Agriculture 2022, 12(7), 987; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12070987 - 8 Jul 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1438
Abstract
The characteristics of spray droplets are important for calculating the hydraulic performance of sprinklers. In order to evaluate the effects of working pressure and nozzle diameter on the near ground droplet characteristics of the Nelson R33 sprinkler, an experiment was conducted to test [...] Read more.
The characteristics of spray droplets are important for calculating the hydraulic performance of sprinklers. In order to evaluate the effects of working pressure and nozzle diameter on the near ground droplet characteristics of the Nelson R33 sprinkler, an experiment was conducted to test the droplet size and velocity by using a two-dimensional video disdrometer (2DVD). Based on the water application rate, droplet diameter and velocity, the kinetic energy was calculated. The results show that there is an exponential positive correlation between the range and the volume-weighted mean particle size of droplets (VMD). The average kinetic energy of a single droplet fits well with the power function model. Under the minimum pressure of 200 kPa, the diameter and kinetic energy of droplets are large, and the peak values are 5.67 mm and 0.0092 J, which are 1.14 to 1.62 times and 1.18 to 5.68 times those of other working conditions, respectively. When the nozzle diameter is the smallest (4.4 mm), the droplet diameter and peak kinetic energy are 1.12 to 1.58 times and 1.02 to 1.26 times higher than 4.8 and 5.2 mm. Therefore, it is not recommended to work under the condition of less than 250 kPa, and a small-diameter nozzle should be selected while ensuring uniform kinetic energy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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23 pages, 5513 KiB  
Article
Energy Balance, Microclimate, and Crop Evapotranspiration of Winter Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) under Sprinkler Irrigation
by Xiaopei Tang, Haijun Liu, Li Yang, Lun Li and Jie Chang
Agriculture 2022, 12(7), 953; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12070953 - 30 Jun 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1610
Abstract
Understanding the impact of sprinkler irrigation on field energy balance, microclimate, and crop evapotranspiration is of great importance for optimizing irrigation scheduling and enhancing crop growth. In this study, the microclimate variables, energy, and water flux were measured using an eddy covariance system [...] Read more.
Understanding the impact of sprinkler irrigation on field energy balance, microclimate, and crop evapotranspiration is of great importance for optimizing irrigation scheduling and enhancing crop growth. In this study, the microclimate variables, energy, and water flux were measured using an eddy covariance system during four wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) growing seasons in a sprinkler-irrigated field of North China Plain. The variation patterns of microclimate, energy balance (net solar radiation Rn, soil heat flux G, latent heat LE, and sensible heat H) and crop evapotranspiration (ET) were analyzed during and after sprinkler irrigation events. A novel quantitative model using a stepwise regression method was developed to predict the change in microclimate after sprinkler irrigation by considering irrigation, weather, meteorology, and crop traits. The results showed that the reflectance rate of the wheat canopy decreased by 0.01, and the daily LE/Rn increased by 0.19–0.23 in the 1–3 days after sprinkler irrigation with 40–50 mm water, which finally resulted in crop ET increased by 1.8–4.7 mm during irrigation interval, and seasonal total ET could increase by 9–24 mm when five normal sprinkler irrigations were implemented in a wheat season. The mean daily H/Rn decreased by 0.06–0.17, indicating weak energy exchange between canopy and environment. The measured daily minimum (Tmin), maximum temperatures (Tmax) and daily mean vapor pressure deficit (VPD) decreased by approximately 0.8 °C, 0.9 °C, and 0.25 kPa, respectively, and daily mean relative humidity increased by approximately 7.5% on the first 3 days after sprinkler irrigation; and these changes decreased and were negligible on the 5th–7th days. The decreases in daily Tmin, Tmax, and mean VPD after sprinkler irrigation could change more under higher irrigation amounts and sunny days with a larger crop leaf area index based on the fitted models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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18 pages, 2032 KiB  
Article
Modeling the Water and Nitrogen Management Practices in Paddy Fields with HYDRUS-1D
by Kaiwen Chen, Shuang’en Yu, Tao Ma, Jihui Ding, Pingru He, Yao Li, Yan Dai and Guangquan Zeng
Agriculture 2022, 12(7), 924; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12070924 - 26 Jun 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 2727
Abstract
Rice production involves abundant water and fertilizer inputs and is prone to nitrogen (N) loss via surface runoff and leaching, resulting in agricultural diffuse pollution. Based on a two-season paddy field experiment in Jiangsu Province, China, field water and N dynamics and their [...] Read more.
Rice production involves abundant water and fertilizer inputs and is prone to nitrogen (N) loss via surface runoff and leaching, resulting in agricultural diffuse pollution. Based on a two-season paddy field experiment in Jiangsu Province, China, field water and N dynamics and their balances were determined with the well-calibrated HYDRUS-1D model. Then, scenarios of different controlled drainage and N fertilizer applications were simulated using the HYDRUS-1D model to analyze the features and factors of N loss from paddy fields. Evapotranspiration and deep percolation were the two dominant losses of total water input over the two seasons, with an average loss of 50.9% and 38.8%, respectively. Additionally, gaseous loss of N from the whole soil column accounted for more than half of total N input on average, i.e., ammonia volatilization (17.5% on average for two seasons) and denitrification (39.7%), while the N uptake by rice accounted for 37.1% on average. The ratio of N loss via surface runoff to total N input exceeded 20% when the N fertilizer rate reached 300 kg ha−1. More and longer rainwater storage in rice fields under controlled drainage reduced surface runoff losses but increased the risk of groundwater contamination by N leaching. Therefore, compared with raising the maximum ponding rainwater depth for controlled drainage, optimizing N fertilizer inputs may be more beneficial for controlling agricultural diffuse pollution by reducing N loss via surface runoff and leaching. The HYDRUS-1D model provides an approach for the quantitative decision-making process of sustainable agricultural water and N management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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15 pages, 2684 KiB  
Article
Effects of Nitrogen Fertilization on Physiological Response of Maize to Soil Salinity
by Kaixuan Du, Yanqun Zhang, Shanshan Qin, Lijuan Wang, Baozhong Zhang and Shuji Wang
Agriculture 2022, 12(6), 877; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12060877 - 17 Jun 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2245
Abstract
Soil salinization is a global problem that causes huge losses in agricultural production. Salt can interfere with crop absorption and metabolism of nutrients and water, affect plant physiological responses and reduce plant biomass. Maize, a very important economic crop, can adapt to a [...] Read more.
Soil salinization is a global problem that causes huge losses in agricultural production. Salt can interfere with crop absorption and metabolism of nutrients and water, affect plant physiological responses and reduce plant biomass. Maize, a very important economic crop, can adapt to a certain degree of saline-alkali soil. It is essential to understand the physiological indexes of response to soil salinity concentrations and explore the effects of different nitrogen fertilizer treatments on maize growth. In this study, three soil salinity gradients (S1, S2 and S3 were with soil salt concentration, Ssc, of 0, 0.1% and 0.25%, respectively) and two nitrogen application rates (N0 and N1 were without and with nitrogen applied (13.2 g per pot), respectively) were set up. Plant growth and photosynthetic parameters were measured. Whether nitrogen was applied or not, with the increase in Ssc, leaf area, plant height, stem diameter, SPAD, leaf water potential, RuBP carboxylase, and PEP carboxylase activities, photosynthetic rate (A), stomatal conductance (gs), the maximum stomatal conductance (gsmax), and the stomatal morphological parameters such as stomatal width and maximum stomatal area (amax), all showed a downward trend. Under the S1 and S2 treatments, compared with the N0, the N1 treatment alleviated the stress effect of the Ssc on these indicators. However, under S3 treatment, the stress degrees of leaf water potential, gs, gsmax and amax, were aggravated after nitrogen application. This indicated that under the high Ssc of S3, the interaction between nitrogen application and soil salinity should be considered. WUEin increased with the increase in Ssc. Moreover, under N1 treatments, the increase in WUEin with Ssc was greater than that with N0. With the increase in Ssc, whether nitrogen was applied or not, the dry weight of maize declined by 44.2% and 73.0%, respectively, for the S2 and S3 treatments. Under S2 treatment, N1 significantly improved the dry matter mass of maize compared with the N0 treatment. The results showed that soil salt stress can inhibit crop growth, physiology and dry matter accumulation, and that nitrogen application can alleviate this within a specific salinity range. Such results indicate that in saline-alkali areas, whether nitrogen fertilizer is applied or not should depend on the level of Ssc to improve plant growth. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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18 pages, 5012 KiB  
Article
Agricultural Water Optimal Allocation Using Minimum Cross-Entropy and Entropy-Weight-Based TOPSIS Method in Hetao Irrigation District, Northwest China
by Yunquan Zhang and Peiling Yang
Agriculture 2022, 12(6), 853; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12060853 - 13 Jun 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1855
Abstract
Affected by the temporal and spatial changes of natural resources, human activities, and social economic system policies, there are many uncertainties in the development, utilization, and management process of irrigation district agricultural water resources, which will increase the complexity of the use of [...] Read more.
Affected by the temporal and spatial changes of natural resources, human activities, and social economic system policies, there are many uncertainties in the development, utilization, and management process of irrigation district agricultural water resources, which will increase the complexity of the use of irrigation district agricultural water resources. Decision makers find it challenging to cope with the complexity of fluctuating water supplies and demands that are critical for water resources’ allocation. In response to these issues, this paper presents an optimization modeling approach for agricultural water allocation at an irrigation district scale, considering the uncertainties of water supply and demand. The minimum cross-entropy method was used to estimate the parameters of hydrologic frequency distribution functions of water supply and demand, which are the basis for agricultural water resources’ optimal allocation and the evaluation of water resources’ carrying capacity in the Hetao Irrigation District. Interval Linear Fractional Programming was used to find water availability, shortage, and use efficiency in different irrigation areas of the Hetao Irrigation District (HID) under different scenarios. The denominator of fractional planning is the environmental goal, and the numerator is the economic goal; so, the objective function of fractional programming is the utility rate required in the post-optimization analysis. Future water availability and shortage scenarios are adopted consistent with the Representative Concentration Pathways’ (RCPs’) framework, and future water use scenarios are developed using the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways’ (SSPs’) framework. Results revealed that under SSP1, the annual water consumption increased from 30 billion m3 to 60 billion m3, almost doubling in Urad. The annual water consumption under SSP2 and SSP3 increased slightly, from 30 billion m3 to about 50 billion m3. The amount of water available for well irrigation in Urad decreased from 300 to 250 billion m3, while the amount of water available for canal irrigation in Urad remained at 270 billion m3 from 2010 s to 2030 s, only dropping to 240 billion m3 in 2040 s. The entropy-weight-based Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to an Ideal Solution (TOPSIS) method was applied to evaluate agricultural water resources’ allocation schemes because it can avoid the subjectivity of weight determination and can reflect the dynamic changing trend of irrigation district agricultural water resources’ carrying capacity. The approach is applicable to most regions, such as the Hetao Irrigation District in the Upper Yellow River Basi with limited precipitation, to determine water strategies under the changing environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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15 pages, 3829 KiB  
Article
Transparent and Black Film Mulching Improve Photosynthesis and Yield of Summer Maize in North China Plain
by Shanshan Qin, Yanqun Zhang, Jiandong Wang, Chuanjuan Wang, Yan Mo and Shihong Gong
Agriculture 2022, 12(5), 719; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12050719 - 18 May 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1901
Abstract
In order to clarify the influences of drip irrigation under different mulch materials on crop yield, field experiments were carried out in the North China Plain for two seasons in 2020 and 2021. The changes in field microenvironment, photosynthetic capacity, leaf biological factors, [...] Read more.
In order to clarify the influences of drip irrigation under different mulch materials on crop yield, field experiments were carried out in the North China Plain for two seasons in 2020 and 2021. The changes in field microenvironment, photosynthetic capacity, leaf biological factors, and maize growth indexes were analyzed under drip irrigation with transparent film (W), black film (B), and straw mulching (S), with a nonmulching field as control (CK). The results showed that compared with CK, the yield of W and B increased by 7.2–9.9% and 7.1–12.4%, and the yield of S did not change significantly. The increase in yield was related to the improvement of the field microenvironment and photosynthetic capacity and higher LAI. Compared with CK, the soil water content 0–40 cm below the soil surface of W, B, and S increased by 13.6%, 9.1%, and 4.6%, respectively, and the 5 cm effective accumulated soil temperature of W and B increased by 7.9–10.2% and 4.1–4.7%, respectively. The maximum carboxylation rate (Vmax) of W, B, and S at the jointing stage was significantly increased by 3.5–17.3%, 12.7–17.6%, and 10.1–12.7% compared with CK. There was a significant linear correlation between Vmax and Nmass, and the correlation was affected by mulching treatments. At the jointing stage, compared with the CK, the LAI of W and B significantly increased by 8.6–66.5% and 7.2–56.0%, but there was no significant difference between S and CK. In conclusion, the increase in yield of W and B resulted from the combined effect of increasing LAI, Vmax, and soil water content and temperature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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13 pages, 2344 KiB  
Article
Humic Acid Fertilizer Incorporation Increases Rice Radiation Use, Growth, and Yield: A Case Study on the Songnen Plain, China
by Ennan Zheng, Mengting Qin, Zhongxue Zhang and Tianyu Xu
Agriculture 2022, 12(5), 653; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12050653 - 30 Apr 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2281
Abstract
Humic acid fertilizer (HA) incorporation is a common method for improving crop growth and soil fertility. However, the effects of HA incorporation on rice growth are still unknown. We conducted a two-year field experiment to determine the radiation use, growth, and yield of [...] Read more.
Humic acid fertilizer (HA) incorporation is a common method for improving crop growth and soil fertility. However, the effects of HA incorporation on rice growth are still unknown. We conducted a two-year field experiment to determine the radiation use, growth, and yield of rice grown with five different HA rates: 110 kg∙ha−1 100% urea (pure nitrogen) (T1); 30% HA and 70% urea (T2); 50% HA and 50% urea (T3); 70% HA and 30% urea (T4), and 1500 kg∙ha−1 100% HA (T5). The results showed that the T2 treatment had the lowest values of photosynthetic efficiency of PSII (Fv/Fm), relative leaf chlorophyll content (SPAD), plant height and leaf area index (LAI) in both years, which were similar to the photosynthetically active radiation (IPAR), radiation use efficiency (RUE), yield, and biomass. In contrast, the highest harvest index (HI) value was found in the T2 treatment. In the two years, the T4 and T5 treatments showed no significant differences. However, the multivariate statistical method based on principal component analysis showed that in the first principal component, the LAI, biomass, yield, plant height, SPAD, Fv/Fm, IPAR, and RUE had a positive correlation, and the HI had a negative correlation. The LAI, yield, plant height, SPAD, HI, and RUE had a positive correlation, but biomass, Fv/Fm and IPAR had a negative correlation in the second principal component. Across the different HA treatments, the comprehensive scores were T5 > T4 > T3 > T1 > T2, with values of 2.13, 1.38, −0.17, −0.34, and −3.00, respectively. According to the principal component analysis results of each index, the T5 treatment was better than the T4 treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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14 pages, 3769 KiB  
Article
Scientific Irrigation Scheduling for Sustainable Production in Olive Groves
by Marjan Aziz, Madeeha Khan, Naveeda Anjum, Muhammad Sultan, Redmond R. Shamshiri, Sobhy M. Ibrahim, Siva K. Balasundram and Muhammad Aleem
Agriculture 2022, 12(4), 564; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12040564 - 15 Apr 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3495
Abstract
The present study aimed at investigating scientific irrigation scheduling (SIS) for the sustainable production of olive groves. The SIS allows farmers to schedule water rotation in their fields to abate crop water stress and maximize yields, which could be achieved through the precise [...] Read more.
The present study aimed at investigating scientific irrigation scheduling (SIS) for the sustainable production of olive groves. The SIS allows farmers to schedule water rotation in their fields to abate crop water stress and maximize yields, which could be achieved through the precise monitoring of soil moisture. For this purpose, the study used three kinds of soil moisture sensors, including tensiometer sensors, irrometer sensors, and gypsum blocks for precise measurement of the soil moisture. These soil moisture sensors were calibrated by performing experiments in the field and laboratory at Barani Agricultural Research Institute, Chakwal in 2018 and 2019. The calibration curves were obtained by performing gravimetric analysis at 0.3 and 0.6 m depths, thereby equations were developed using regression analysis. The coefficient of determination (R2) at 0.3 and 0.6 m depth for tensiometer, irrometer, and gypsum blocks was found to be equal to 0.98, 0.98; 0.75, 0.89; and 0.82, and 0.95, respectively. After that, a drip irrigation system was installed with the calibrated soil moisture sensors at 0.3 and 0.6 m depth to schedule irrigation for production of olive groves as compared to conventional farmer practice, thereby soil moisture profiles of these sensors were obtained to investigate the SIS. The results showed that the irrometer sensor performed as expected and contributed to the irrigation water savings between 17% and 25% in 2018 and 2019, respectively, by reducing the number of irrigations as compared toother soil moisture sensors and farmer practices. Additionally, olive yield efficiencies of 8% and 9%were observed by the tensiometer in 2018 and 2019, respectively. The outcome of the study suggests that an effective method in providing sustainable production of olive groves and enhancing yield efficiency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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13 pages, 3536 KiB  
Article
Analysis of the Influence of the Channel Layout and Size on the Hydraulic Performance of Emitters
by Peisen Du, Zhiqin Li, Cuncai Wang and Juanjuan Ma
Agriculture 2022, 12(4), 541; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12040541 - 11 Apr 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1761
Abstract
In this paper, a split-flow channel layout with one (group) inlet and two (group) outlets is adopted, based on computational fluid dynamics technology, and compared with the current commonly used channel with one (group) inlet and one (group) outlet emitter. On the premise [...] Read more.
In this paper, a split-flow channel layout with one (group) inlet and two (group) outlets is adopted, based on computational fluid dynamics technology, and compared with the current commonly used channel with one (group) inlet and one (group) outlet emitter. On the premise of the same outlet spacing, the pressure–flow relationship curve and slope of the split-flow emitter were analyzed under the three channel layouts of non-return, single-sided re-entry, and bilateral re-entry, with different channel widths and lengths. When exploring the influence of the channel layout and size on the hydraulic performance of split-flow emitters, the results showed that when the split-flow emitter with a non-return channel is adopted and the hydraulic performance is not reduced, the single-side channel length is half that of the one-in-one-out emitter, meaning the channel width needs to be reduced by 15%. When the channel layout is a single-sided channel re-entry, the hydraulic performance is better than that of the one-in-one-out emitter; if the hydraulic performance of the two remains unchanged, the channel width can be increased by 10% or the single-sided channel length can be reduced by 20%. When the channel layout is a bilateral channel re-entry, the channel width can be increased by nearly 30% if the hydraulic performance of the 2 is consistent, and the single-side channel length is increased by about 50%. When the split-flow emitter adopts a non-return channel layout, the channel width needs to be reduced to ensure the hydraulic performance is consistent. If the layout of single-sided channel re-entry or bilateral channel re-entry is adopted, the hydraulic performance is better than that of the one-in-one-out emitter and the hydraulic performance of the two is consistent. Thus, the channel length can be reduced or the channel width increased, which is beneficial for improving the anti-clogging performance of the emitter. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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12 pages, 2623 KiB  
Article
Modeling of Border Irrigation in Soils with the Presence of a Shallow Water Table. I: The Advance Phase
by Sebastián Fuentes and Carlos Chávez
Agriculture 2022, 12(3), 426; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12030426 - 18 Mar 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2470
Abstract
The overelevation of the water table in surface irrigation plots is one of the main factors affecting salinization in agricultural soils. Therefore, it is necessary to develop simulation models that consider the effect of a shallow water table in the process of advance-infiltration [...] Read more.
The overelevation of the water table in surface irrigation plots is one of the main factors affecting salinization in agricultural soils. Therefore, it is necessary to develop simulation models that consider the effect of a shallow water table in the process of advance-infiltration of the water in an irrigation event. This paper, the first in a series of three, develops a simple mathematical model for the advance phase of border irrigation in soils with the presence of a shallow water table. In this study, the hydrodynamic model of the Barré de Saint-Venant equations is used for the water surface flow, and the equations are solved using a Lagrangian finite-differences scheme, while in the subsurface flow, an analytical solution for infiltration in soils with a shallow water table is found using the bisection method to search for roots. In addition, a hydraulic resistance law is used that eliminates the numerical instabilities presented by the Manning–Strickler law. The model results for difference irrigation tests show adjustments with an R2 > 0.98 for the cases presented. It is also revealed that, when increasing the time step, the precision is maintained, and it is possible to reduce the computation time by up to 99.45%. Finally, the model proposed here is recommended for studying the advance process during surface irrigation in soils with shallow water tables. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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21 pages, 3239 KiB  
Article
Microclimate and Plant Transpiration of Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) in a Sunken Solar Greenhouse in North China
by Li Yang, Haijun Liu, Shabtai Cohen and Zhuangzhuang Gao
Agriculture 2022, 12(2), 260; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12020260 - 11 Feb 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3038
Abstract
The solar greenhouse is a common protected structure for crop production when ambient temperatures are low. In the North China Plain (NCP) winter temperatures are very low and an improved solar greenhouse with a lowered soil surface (0.5–1.5 m deep), referred to as [...] Read more.
The solar greenhouse is a common protected structure for crop production when ambient temperatures are low. In the North China Plain (NCP) winter temperatures are very low and an improved solar greenhouse with a lowered soil surface (0.5–1.5 m deep), referred to as a sunken solar greenhouse (SSG), is used. A four-season experiment was conducted in a commercial SSG with tomato crops to characterize internal microclimate, sap flow (SF) and crop coefficients. Results show that temperature inside the SSG could be more than 20 °C higher than outside in winter, which favors tomato growth and resulted in acceptable yields. Daily total SF was related to solar radiation, vapor pressure deficit (VPD) and temperature, in that order, both in winter and summer. The decoupling coefficient (which is the ratio of radiative to aerodynamic influences on evapotranspiration) in daytime was 0.76 in winter and 0.84 in summer, indicating strong decoupling (i.e., predominance of radiative influences) of the internal environment where wind speed was low. Basal crop coefficients at the mid stage of crop growth averaged 1.15–1.43 in winter and 0.91–0.92 in spring and summer. Thus, in the SSG, for similar climatic conditions sap flow in winter was higher than that in summer, which should be considered in irrigation scheduling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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17 pages, 1143 KiB  
Article
Response of Rice Harvest Index to Different Water and Nitrogen Management Modes in the Black Soil Region of Northeast China
by Sicheng Du, Zhongxue Zhang, Tiecheng Li, Zhongbo Wang, Xin Zhou, Zhaomei Gai and Zhijuan Qi
Agriculture 2022, 12(1), 115; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12010115 - 14 Jan 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 5375
Abstract
Understanding the methods leading to rice yield increase is vital for sustainable agricultural development. Improving the harvest index (HI) is an important way to increase rice yield. To explore the effects of different water and nitrogen management modes on the rice HI in [...] Read more.
Understanding the methods leading to rice yield increase is vital for sustainable agricultural development. Improving the harvest index (HI) is an important way to increase rice yield. To explore the effects of different water and nitrogen management modes on the rice HI in the black soil region of Northeast China, a field experiment was conducted in 2019 (Y1) and 2020 (Y2). Two irrigation methods, conventional flooding irrigation (FI) and controlled irrigation (CI), were established in the experiment, and four nitrogen application levels (0 kg/ha, 85 kg/ha, 110 kg/ha, and 135 kg/ha) were set during the entire growth period, named N0, N1, N2, and N3. The dry matter weight and the rice yield at the maturity stage were determined, and the HI was then calculated. The results showed that different irrigation modes and nitrogen application levels had significant effects on the rice HI. Under different irrigation modes with the same nitrogen application level during the two years, the comparison regular of HI was consistent. In Y1 and Y2, the HI of FN0 was 3.36% and 5.02% higher than that of CN0 (p < 0.05), and the HI of CN1 was 0.31% and 2.43% higher than that of FN1 (p > 0.05). The HI under CI was significantly higher than that under FI under N2 and N3 (p < 0.05), the HI of CN2 was 4.21% and 4.97% higher than that of FN2, and the HI of FN3 was 13.12% and 20.34% higher than that of CN3. In addition, during the two-year experiment, the HI first increased and then decreased with an increase in the nitrogen application rate under FI and CI. Under the FI treatments, the HI of N1 was the highest, and that of N2 was the highest under the CI treatments. A variance analysis showed that the irrigation pattern and nitrogen application level had significant interactions on the rice HI (p < 0.01), and the appropriate water and N management mode could increase rice the HI by 26.89%. The experimental results showed that the HI of the 110 kg/ha nitrogen application rate under CI was the highest, reaching 0.574 and 0.572, respectively, in two years. This study provides a data reference and theoretical support for realizing water savings, nitrogen reduction, and sustainable agricultural development in the black soil region of Northeast China. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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Review

Jump to: Research

15 pages, 2279 KiB  
Review
Scientometric Analysis on Rice Research under Drought, Waterlogging or Abrupt Drought-Flood Alternation Stress
by Xiaoyan Pan, Hui Wang, Zan Ouyang, Zifan Song, Hongjin Long and Wang Luo
Agriculture 2022, 12(9), 1509; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12091509 - 19 Sep 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1946
Abstract
Many studies have shown that abiotic stresses could severely impact crop growth and yield, but a comprehensive review from a bibliometric perspective is lacking. This study explores how the research direction of rice under drought, waterlogging or both stresses has evolved over the [...] Read more.
Many studies have shown that abiotic stresses could severely impact crop growth and yield, but a comprehensive review from a bibliometric perspective is lacking. This study explores how the research direction of rice under drought, waterlogging or both stresses has evolved over the past three decades, based on bibliometric analysis using Vosviewer 1.6.15 and HistCite Pro. Data were collected from the academic database of Web of Science. The results showed that 12 journals had a high number of publications and highly local citations. Meanwhile, the three journals of Field Crops Research, Journal of Experimental Botany and Plant Physiology could be the most influential leaders in this field. The author Arvind Kumar had the highest contribution to the output of articles, and Lizhong Xiong had a greater impact on the field. China, and Chinese institutions, were dominant in terms of the number of articles, but Japan, Germany, UK and institutions in USA and Japan had a higher quality of publications on average. Scholars are concerned with using transgenic methods for improving rice productivity with increasing abiotic stress tolerance; the research topics of rice cultivars, irrigation, water-use efficiency and soil fertility may be gradually shifting from a single theme to intertwining with the themes of genomics and abiotic/biotic resistance with climate change in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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16 pages, 2832 KiB  
Review
Assessment of Water Productivity Enhancement and Sustainability Potential of Different Resource Conservation Technologies: A Review in the Context of Pakistan
by Muhammad Adnan Shahid, Junaid Nawaz Chauhdary, Muhammad Usman, Muhammad Uzair Qamar and Abdul Shabbir
Agriculture 2022, 12(7), 1058; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture12071058 - 19 Jul 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2911
Abstract
Agriculture is the major economic sector in Asian countries and the majority of their population depends on it. In addition to the largest irrigation system in the Indus basin, Pakistan is suffering from water shortages that are affecting the overall crop production of [...] Read more.
Agriculture is the major economic sector in Asian countries and the majority of their population depends on it. In addition to the largest irrigation system in the Indus basin, Pakistan is suffering from water shortages that are affecting the overall crop production of the country. Different resource conservation technologies (RCTs) such as precision land leveling (PLL), raised bed planting (RBP), and different high-efficiency irrigation systems (HEISs) can be opted for better water productivity. In this study, the potential of these RCTs has been explored to enhance production and save irrigation water through their sustainable adoption. Based on studies by different researchers, water savings up to 47% and yield increases up to 35% have been reported under PLL, while water savings up to 50% and about 10–33% yield increases were observed under RBP. Similarly, under different HEISs, water savings up to 80% and yield increases up to 53% have been reported compared with crops sown under conventional farming. Based on the findings of the researchers regarding RCTs, these have been proved as progressive sowing techniques for better productivity under the limited available water scenario. The detailed review in this paper concludes that RCTs resulting in the improvement of gravity irrigation methods, viz., PLL and RBP, have a great potential of adoption and water productivity improvement at the regional scale in developing countries such as Pakistan, while high-cost HEISs can also be promoted at limited scale among progressive farmers for high-value agriculture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water-Saving Irrigation Technology and Strategies for Crop Production)
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