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item Lamb, Marshall
item Rowland, Diane
item Sorensen, Ronald - Ron
item Zhu, Heping
item Blankenship, Paul
item Butts, Christopher - Chris

Submitted to: American Peanut Research and Education Society Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/1/2003
Publication Date: 12/1/2003
Citation: Lamb, M.C., Rowland, D., Sorensen, R.B., Zhu, H., Blankenship, P.D., Butts, C.L. 2004. Research at the nprl shellman irrigation research farm. American Peanut Research and Education Society Abstracts. Vol. 35.

Interpretive Summary: Not Required.

Technical Abstract: Next to land, adequate water for irrigation is arguably the most important natural resource in production agriculture. However, repeated drought years, urban sprawl, and interstate litigation are individually and collectively threatening the current and future availability of water for crop irrigation. Potential reductions in future irrigation water availability exist. The impact of such reductions will directly impact farm income and risks. To address the impact of potential water reductions and develop more water conserving irrigation technologies, a large-scale irrigation research facility was established in CY 2001 comparing three irrigation methods (sprinkler, sub-surface drip, surface drip), three irrigation rates (100%, 66%, 33%), and a non-irrigated control in six replicated rotation sequences including peanuts, cotton, corn, and grain sorghum. One of the objectives of this research is to compare irrigation methods, amounts, and amount within method on peanut (and other crop) yield, quality, and net economic returns. Comparing the 100% irrigation rates in the sprinkler, sub-surface drip, surface drip and non-irrigated treatments, peanut yields averaged 5130, 5089, 5164, and 3291 kg/ha, respectively. No significant differences resulted in peanut yield in the irrigation methods, amounts, or amounts within methods while all were significantly higher than non-irrigated yields. Previous research indicates that from a capital investment standpoint, drip irrigation is more cost effective on small fields (50 acres or less) and/or irregularly shaped fields while centerpivot is more cost effective on larger fields. Though preliminary, the results of this research will allow producers to evaluate the economies of scale for irrigation methods specific to individual fields with constant yield expectations.