alexa Evapotranspiration and Crop Coefficients of Wheat and Sorghum
Environmental Sciences

Environmental Sciences

Hydrology: Current Research

Author(s): N K Tyagi, D K Sharma, S K Luthra

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Wheat and sorghum are important cereal crops next only to rice in India and several other Asian countries. Improved water management requires accurate scheduling of irrigation, which in turn requires an accurate measurement of daily crop evapotranspiration ETc. Thus, the first objective of this study was to measure daily, weekly, and seasonal crop ETc of wheat and sorghum directly from sensitive weighing-type lysimeters. Experiments were conducted in a set of two electronic weighing-type lysimeters, 2 × 2 m in surface area and 2-m deep, to measure the hourly evapotranspiration of wheat and sorghum from 1991 to 1995 at Karnal, India. The average daily ETc of wheat varied from <1 mm/d in the early growing period to >4 mm/d at milking stage. The peak ETc of wheat was 4.6 mm/d and it occurred 16 weeks after sowing at the reproductive growth stage when leaf area index was 3.5. The measured seasonal ETc of wheat was 336 mm. In the case of sorghum, ETc was 3 mm/d at the initial stage, achieved a peak value of 6 mm/d between 8 and 9 weeks after sowing and declined to 4 mm/d during the maturity stage. The measured seasonal ETc of sorghum was 495 mm. Precise information on crop coefficients for estimating ETc, which is required for regional scale irrigation planning, is lacking in developing countries. Therefore, the second objective of this paper was to develop crop coefficients Kc for wheat and sorghum from ETc measurements and weather data. The estimated values of Kc for wheat by the Penman-Monteith method at the four crop growth stages (initial, crop development, reproductive, and maturity) were 0.5, 1.36, 1.24, and 0.42, respectively, and for sorghum the Kc values at the four growth stages were 0.53, 0.82, 1.24, and 0.85, respectively. In the case of these two crops, actual Kc values are significantly different from those suggested by the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations indicating the need for generating these values at the local/regional level. The third objective of this paper was to investigate the relationship between standard Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations Penman-Monteith, and other ETr methods.

This article was published in Journal of Irrigation and Drainage Engineering and referenced in Hydrology: Current Research

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