Submitted to: ASAE Annual International Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/18/2004
Publication Date: 7/17/2005
Citation: McCann, I., Starr, J. 2005. Irrigation management and soil water content for drip irrigated watermelon in Deleware [abstract]. ASAE Annual International Meeting. 2005 CDROM.
Technical Abstract: Seedless watermelon, primarily produced with drip irrigation under plastic mulch, has become an important crop in Delaware. The combination of high crop value and sandy soils tends to lead to excessive water and nitrogen use, with consequences for groundwater quality impacts. A study was conducted in 2004 using 3 irrigation amounts, ranging from deficient to excess, with the objective of developing irrigation guidelines for growers. Soil water content was logged at 20 minute intervals at depths of 10, 20, 30, 50 and 70 cm using a capacitance based probe. As a separate comparison, manual measurements were made at the same depths 1 to 4 times per week using a TDR based probe. An adjacent weather station provided daily estimates of reference ET. Measured changes in soil water content over time show the effect of crop water use, irrigation and rainfall, and any leaching that may have occurred.