Submitted to: Peanut Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/1/2004
Publication Date: 11/1/2006
Citation: Sorensen, R.B., Butts, C.L., Rowland, D. 2006. Five years of subsurface drip irrigation on peanut: what have we learned?. Peanut Science. 32(1):14-19
Interpretive Summary: A long-term subsurface drip irrigation system was installed in 1998 on a Tifton loamy sand. This project had five crop rotations, two drip tube lateral spacings, and three irrigation levels. Crop rotations ranged from continuous peanut to four years between peanut rotated with cotton and corn. Drip tube laterals were installed underneath each crop row (narrow) and alternate row middles (wide). Crops were irrigated daily at 100, 75 and 50% of estimated water use. Peanut yield was higher when rotated with cotton or corn compared with continuous peanut. Peanut planted in alternate year with corn had higher yields that peanut planted in alternate years with cotton. There was no pod yield difference between the narrow and wide drip tube lateral spacing. Peanut irrigated at 75% irrigation level with narrow drip tube laterals had the same yield as the 100% irrigation level implying a 25% water savings. Best yields were obtained when there was at least two years between peanut crops, drip tube laterals under each crop row, and irrigated at the 75% irrigation level. Lowest yields were in continues peanut, drip tube laterals in alternate row middles, and irrigated at the 50% irrigation level.
Technical Abstract: A subsurface drip irrigation system was installed in 1998 on a Tifton loamy sand (Fine-loamy, kaolinitic, thermic Plinthic Kandiudults) with five crop rotations, two drip tube lateral spacings, and three irrigation levels. Crop rotations ranged from continuous peanut (Arachis hypogeae L) to four years between peanut rotated with cotton (Gossypium hirusutum L.) and corn (Zea mays L.). Laterals were installed underneath each crop row (narrow) and alternate row middles (wide). Crops were irrigated daily at 100, 75 and 50% of estimated water use. Continuous peanut yields averaged 3107 kg ha-1 while peanut in rotation averaged 4927 kg ha-1. Yield of peanut, in rotation and with narrow spaced drip tube laterals averaged 4883 kg ha-1 and wide spaced laterals averaged 4592 kg ha-1. Peanut in rotation and irrigated at 75% had the same pod yield as the 100% irrigated implying a 25% water savings. The 100 and 75% irrigated and rotated treatments had about 8.0% higher yields compared with the 50% irrigated rotated treatments. Peanut planted in alternate year rotations following cotton and corn averaged 4164 kg ha-1 across all irrigation levels. Peanut yield following corn at the 75% irrigation level averaged 4593 kg ha-1. Longer peanut rotations (3 to 4 years) averaged 5309 kg ha-1 across all water levels. Overall, best management practices of: good crop rotation (at least two years between peanut crops), narrow drip tube spacing, and irrigation at 75%, peanut yield averaged 5305 kg ha-1. Lowest yields were in continuous peanut, drip tube laterals at wide spacing, and irrigated at 50%, peanut yield averaged 2891 kg ha-1 or a 46% yield decrease.