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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Effects of Subirrigation on Soil Properties

Authors
item Fausey, Norman
item Baker, Barbara

Submitted to: ASAE Annual International Meeting
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: May 27, 2003
Publication Date: July 25, 2003
Citation: FAUSEY, N.R., BAKER, B.J. EFFECTS OF SUBIRRIGATION ON SOIL PROPERTIES. ASAE ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL MEETING. 2003. AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR AGRICULTURAL ENGINEERS. PAPER NO. 032086.

Technical Abstract: Subirrigation utilizes subsurface drainage system infrastructure to add water back into the soil during the growing season to avoid drought stress and assure high crop yield. Some farmers have reported increased power requirement when tilling subirrigated fields. Examination of the soil physical and chemical properties in a replicated field plot study involving both subirrigation and no subirrigation treatments revealed loss of soil structure and change in pore size distribution in plots receiving annual subirrigation. Further examination revealed a small increase in sodium concentration in the soil profile of subirrigated plots. Soil samples were subsequently taken from other subirrigated fields to examine the roles of soil texture and water source on sodium accumulation. The results indicted that ground water sodium content is a critical parameter when subirrigating high clay content soils.

Last Modified: 11/28/2014
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