Improvement of Durum Wheat (Triticum durum) Surface Irrigation in Swelling Soils

DOI: 10.4236/eng.2013.52033   PDF   HTML     2,963 Downloads   4,713 Views   Citations


This study is targeted to improve surface irrigation performance of durum wheat in swelling soils. For this purpose, furrow and border irrigation trials were carried out and evaluated under different soil water depletion rates, furrow spacing and unitary inlet discharges. Irrigation was triggered whenever the soil water depletion rate reached a predetermined threshold. A comprehensive irrigation evaluation produced hydraulic, agronomic and economic indicators, such as application efficiency, distribution uniformity, crop yield, gross margin and water productivity. Experimental results showed that supplied water depths exceeded soil water deficits, inducing relevant vertical and lateral water losses. Al- though border and furrow irrigation crop yields were virtually tantamount (about 5.5 Mg/ha), furrow irrigation was the system of choice. An irrigation strategy based on a furrow spacing of 150 cm, an inlet discharge of 2 l/s/furrow and a soil water depletion rate of 30% required a gross water depth of 4300 m3/ha/yr and generated an optimum crop yield of 58 qx/ha. In the analyzed range of soil water depletion, the gross margin and water value amounted to 1064 - 1390 Tunisian Dinar per hectare (TD/ha) and 0.39 - 0.44 TD/m3, respectively, for a furrow spacing of 150 cm.

Share and Cite:

A. Slatni, K. Zayani, A. Chebil, A. Zairi, S. Yacoubi and E. Playan, "Improvement of Durum Wheat (Triticum durum) Surface Irrigation in Swelling Soils," Engineering, Vol. 5 No. 2, 2013, pp. 230-236. doi: 10.4236/eng.2013.52033.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] M. Abu-Zeid and A. Hamdy, “Water Vision for the Twenty-First Century in the Arab World,” World Water Council, International Policy Think Tank. Arab Countries Vision Consultations, Marseille, 2002.
[2] W. R. Walker and G. V. Skogerboe, “Surface Irrigation: Theory and Practice,” Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, 1987, p. 386.
[3] M. N. Orang, J. S. Matyac and R. L. Snyder, “Survey of irrigation Methods in California in 2001,” Journal of Irrigation and Drainage Engineering, Vol. 134, No. 1, 2008, pp. 96-100. doi:10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9437(2008)134:1(96)
[4] Gouvernement d’Espagne, “Anuario de Estadística Agroalimentaria,” Ministerio de Agricultura, Pesca y Alimentación, Gobierno de Espa?a, Madrid, 2006.
[5] “Aquastat, L’Irrigation en Afrique en Chiffres,” La Tunisie-Enquête AQUASTAT 2005, p.12.
[6] H. H. Gerke, “By-Pass Flow in Soil,” In: J. Glinski, J. Horabik and J. Lipiec, Eds., Encyclopedia of Agro-Physics, Springer, Dordrecht, 2011, pp. 100-107.
[7] D. Hillel, “Environmental Soil Physics,” Academic Press, London, 1998, p. 771.
[8] R. L. Donahue, R. W. Miller and J. C. Schickluna, “An Introduction to Soils and Plant Growth,” Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, 1977.
[9] M. H. Ali, “Fundamentals of Irrigation and on Farm Water Management,” Vol. 1, Springer, New York, 2010, p. 556. doi:10.1007/978-1-4419-6335-2
[10] Y. M. Cabidoche and B. Ney, “Fonctionnement Hydrique des Sols à Argiles Gonflantes Cultivés. II.—Analyse Expérimentale des Fonctionnements Hydriques Associés à Deux états Structuraux en Vertisol Irrigué,” Agronomie, Vol. 7, No. 4, 1987, pp. 257-270. doi:10.1051/agro:19870405
[11] C. W. Liu, S. W. Cheng, W. S. Yu and S. K. Chen, “Water Infiltration Rate in Cracked Paddy Soil,” Geoderma, Vol. 117, No. 1-2, 2003, pp. 169-181. doi:10.1016/S0016-7061(03)00165-4
[12] P. M. Waller and W. W. Wallender, “Infiltration in Surface Irrigated Swelling Soils,” Irrigation and Drainage Systems, Vol. 5, No. 3, 1991, pp. 249-266. doi:10.1007/BF01112502
[13] A. Zairi, A. Slatni, J. C. Mailhol and H. Achour, “Surface Irrigation Efficiency in Cracking Soils as Influenced by Water Restriction,” In: L. S. Pereira and J. W. Gowing, Eds., Water and the Environment-Innovation Issues in Irrigation and Drainage, CRC Press, Boca Raton, 1998, pp. 120-130.
[14] A. Zairi,A. Slatni, H. El Amami, L. S. Pereaira, P. Rodrigues, A. Derouiche, H. Achour and J. L. Teixeira, “Stratégies D’Irrigation des Céreales en Fonction des Disponibilités D’Eau et de la Technique D’Application Dans le Contexte Tunisien. Séminaire Euro-Méditerranéen sur la Ma?trise de L’Irrigation et du Drainage Pour une Gestion Durable des Périmètres Irrigués Méditerranéens,” Rabat, 1999, pp. 27-29.
[15] A. J. Clemmens and A. R. Dedrick, “Irrigation Techniques and Evaluations,” In: K. K. Tanji and B. Yaron, Eds., Advanced Series in Agricultural Sciences, SpringerVerlag, Berlin, 1994, pp. 64-103.
[16] N. Zapata, E. Playán and J. M. Faci, “Elevation and Infiltration on a Level Basin: II. Impact on Soil Water and Corn Yield,” Irrigation science, Vol. 19, No. 4, 2000, pp. 165-173. doi:10.1007/PL00006711
[17] E. Playán, A. Slatni, R. Castillo and J. M. A. Faci, “Case Study for Irrigation Modernisation: II. Scenario Analysis,” Agricultural Water Management, Vol. 42, No. 3, 2000, pp. 335-354. doi:10.1016/S0378-3774(99)00051-7
[18] J. L. Merriam and J. Keller, “Farm Irrigation System Evaluation, A Guide for Management,” Utah State University, Logan, 1978, p. 271.
[19] A. Zairi, H. Achour and A. Slatni, “Impact de la Restriction de L’eau sur la Qualité de L’irrigation de Surface sur un sol Fendillant,” Rapport de Recherche, 1997, p. 32.

comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2020 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.