Full Length Research Paper
A greenhouse lysimeter study was carried out in Tottori (Japan) during August 2000 to explore the impacts of saline irrigation on water uptake by orange trees. Two lysimeters filled with sandy soil were used. Each lysimeter was planted with a tree. During the first half of August, both lysimeters (L1 and L2)[b1] were irrigated with non-saline water. In the second half of the month, L1 was irrigated with non-saline water (1.0 dS/m) and L2 with saline water (8.6 dS/m). At each irrigation event, 60 and 32 mm water was applied in the first and second half of August, respectively, when average water content of the soil profile was depleted to 70% of field capacity. Osmotic potential in L2 became more negative after application of the saline water. Evapotranspiration from L1 was consistently higher than that from L2. Average transpiration rate (T) reached 5.5 mm/day under non-saline irrigation, while T was only 3.8 mm/day under saline treatment. Up to 99.5% of roots were in the top 60 cm of soil and 73% of the total water uptake was extracted from the same layer. Maximum water withdrawal by the tree was observed at layer of 30 - 60 cm in accordance with root-weight distribution.
Key words: Saline water, orange trees, water uptake.
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