African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6578

Full Length Research Paper

Reduction of soil water content fluctuations and soil temperature variations under retrievable drip irrigation

Khumbulani DHAVU
  • Khumbulani DHAVU
  • Agricultural Research Council, Insititute for Agricultural Engineering, 141 Cresswell Road, Silverton, 0127, Pretoria, South Africa.
  • Google Scholar
Hiroshi YASUDA
  • Hiroshi YASUDA
  • Arid Land Research Center, Tottori University, 1390 Hamasaka, Tottori, 680-0001, Japan.
  • Google Scholar
Aidan SENZANJE
  • Aidan SENZANJE
  • Bioresources Engineering, School of Engineering, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg, Private Bag X01, Scottsville, 3209, South Africa.
  • Google Scholar
Hisao ANYOJI
  • Hisao ANYOJI
  • Arid Land Research Center, Tottori University, 1390 Hamasaka, Tottori, 680-0001, Japan.
  • Google Scholar


  •  Received: 30 September 2013
  •  Accepted: 07 April 2014
  •  Published: 20 June 2014

Abstract

Wide soil water content and temperature variations affect crop yields for reasons ranging from rate of seed germination, seed development, to plant growth. This study aimed at evaluating the extent to which drip irrigation can reduce soil water content and temperature variations. An experiment was carried out in a 154 m2 glasshouse with Tottori dune sand of Japan. Two irrigation levels of 60 and 100% of evapotranspiration, and two dune sand covers of 2 and 5 cm on the drip lines were used. Soil water content and temperature variations were significantly (P < 0.001) reduced under the 5 cm dune sand cover but insignificantly reduced under the 2 cm dune sand cover. Minimum soil temperature was increased, and maximum soil temperature was decreased under the 5 cm dune sand cover. Irrigation level of 100% of evapotranspiration under 5 cm dune sand cover resulted in 20% dry matter yield increase of sorghum. Irrigation level of 60% of evapotranspiration under 5 cm dune sand cover resulted in no significant dry matter yield increase of sorghum. From this study, we conclude that the practical minimum depth of dune sand cover on the drip lines can be 5 cm.

 

Key word: Irrigation level, sand dune soil, soil temperature, surface drip irrigation, water content.