The Effects of Dripper Installation Depth on Increasing the Maize Root Water Uptake Efficiency for Three Various Soil Textures

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Water Sci. and Eng. Dept. Faculty of agriculture and natural resources, IKIU

2 Department of Irrigation & Reclamation Engineering, Campus of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Tehran

3 water Sci. and Eng. Dept. Faculty of agriculture and natural resources, IKIU


Sustainable agriculture at arid and semi-arid areas depends on optimized usage of fresh water resources. Evaporation from soil surface and deep percolation categorized as unuseful losses at irrigation, so their reduction could increase the root water uptake efficiency and yield production. Subsurface drip irrigation could provide this situation. Proper depth for installing dripper is the place that reduces soil surface evaporation and deep percolation. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of various dripper installation depth on soil water content distribution and root water uptake and to choose the proper depth. For this purpose, HYDRUS-2D software was used to investigate the effect of three factors on non-beneficial losses and consumed water in drip irrigation, numerically. These factors were soil texture (loam, clay loam and sandy loam), installation depth (0, 10, 15 and 20 Cm) and dripper discharge (1, 2, 4 and 8 l.h-1). The results showed, although increasing the installation depth could reduce cumulative evaporation up to 40%, but the best installation depth was 15 Cm with discharge rate of 1 l.h-1, according to the amount of deep percolation and consumed water. The effect of soil texture was more than the effect of installation depth on the amount of irrigation water, so that the amount of irrigation water in 2 l.h-1 discharge rate was 2.9, 3.1 and 4.6 m3.m-1 for loam, clay loam and sandy loam soil texture, respectively. Also, for clay loam texture, dripper discharge had the highest effect on root water uptake and the installation depth had the lowest effect on soil surface evaporation.


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