? Estimation of irrigation requirements for drip-irrigated maize in a subhumid climate
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    2018, Vol. 17 Issue (03): 677-692     DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(17)61833-1
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Estimation of irrigation requirements for drip-irrigated maize in a subhumid climate
LIU Yang1, 2, 3, YANG Hai-shun3, LI Jiu-sheng2, LI Yan-feng2, YAN Hai-jun1
1 College of Water Resources and Civil Engineering, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100083, P.R.China
2 State Key Laboratory of Simulation and Regulation of Water Cycle in River Basin, China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research, Beijing 100048, P.R.China
3 Department of Agronomy and Horticulture, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln 68503, United States
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Abstract Drip-irrigation is increasingly applied in maize (Zea mays L.) production in sub-humid region.  It is critical to quantify irrigation requirements during different growth stages under diverse climatic conditions.  In this study, the Hybrid-Maize model was calibrated and applied in a sub-humid Heilongjiang Province in Northeast China to estimate irrigation requirements for drip-irrigated maize during different crop physiological development stages and under diverse agro-climatic conditions.  Using dimensionless scales, the whole growing season of maize was divided into diverse development stages from planting to maturity.  Drip-irrigation dates and irrigation amounts in each irrigation event were simulated and summarized in 30-year simulation from 1981 to 2010.  The maize harvest area of Heilongjiang Province was divided into 10 agro-climatic zones  based on growing degree days, arid index, and temperature seasonality.  The simulated results indicated that seasonal irrigation requirements and water stress during different growth stages were highly related to initial soil water content and distribution of seasonal precipitation.  In the experimental site, the average irrigation amounts and times ranged from 48 to 150 mm with initial soil water content decreasing from 100 to 20% of the maximum soil available water.  Additionally, the earliest drip-irrigation event might occur during 3- to 8-leaf stage.  The water stress could occur at any growth stages of maize, even in wet years with abundant total seasonal rainfall but poor distribution.  And over 50% of grain yield loss could be caused by extended water stress during the kernel setting window and grain filling period.  It is estimated that more than 94% of the maize harvested area in Heilongjiang Province needs to be irrigated although the yield increase varied (0 to 109%) in diverse agro-climatic zones.  Consequently, at least 14% of more maize production could be achieved through drip-irrigation systems in Heilongjiang Province compared to rainfed conditions.
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Key words�� drip irrigation     irrigation requirements     maize     agro-climatic regionlization     crop simulation     sub-humid climate     
Received: 2017-05-27; Published: 2017-10-13

This study was financially supported by the Key Technology R&D Program of China during the 12th Five-year Plan period (2014BAD12B05), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (51479211, 51621061) and the Chinese Scholarship Council (201506350059).

Corresponding Authors: Correspondence LI Jiu-sheng, Tel: +86-10-68786545, E-mail: lijs@iwhr.com; YAN Hai-jun, Tel: +86-10-62737196, E-mail: yanhj@cau.edu.cn   
About author: LIU Yang,E-mail: liuyang.ailove@163.com;
Cite this article:   
LIU Yang, YANG Hai-shun, LI Jiu-sheng, LI Yan-feng, YAN Hai-jun. Estimation of irrigation requirements for drip-irrigated maize in a subhumid climate[J]. Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 2018, 17(03): 677-692.
http://www.chinaagrisci.com/Jwk_zgnykxen/EN/ 10.1016/S2095-3119(17)61833-1      or     http://www.chinaagrisci.com/Jwk_zgnykxen/EN/Y2018/V17/I03/677
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