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Characteristics of dew events in an arid artificial oasis cropland and a sub-humid cropland in China

Meng, Yao, Wen, Xuefa
Journal of Arid Land 2016 v.8 no.3 pp. 399-408
arid lands, cropland, dew, ecosystems, growing season, microclimate, oases, physiological state, vegetation, water vapor, China
Dew is an important source of water which significantly influences the physiological status of vegetation and the microclimate environment. For quantifying the characteristics of dew events and analyzing the underlying mechanism of dew formation in different ecosystems, we measured, based on the flux-profile method, the amount, frequency and duration of dew events in two croplands, an arid artificial oasis cropland in Zhangye, Gansu province and a sub-humid cropland in Luancheng, Hebei province in China. The results showed that dew events were observed in a total of 69 days in Zhangye, which accounted for 59% of the growing season (from 28 May to 21 September, 2012), while 128 days in Luancheng, which accounted for 79% of the growing season (from 5 April to 13 September, 2008). The frequencies of dew events were 2.8 and 2.4 times of those of precipitation in Zhangye and Luancheng, respectively. In addition, the dew amount reached up to 9.9 and 20.2 mm in Zhangye and Luancheng, which accounted for 9.5% and 4.1% of precipitation, respectively. The average amount of dew was 0.14 and 0.16 mm/night in Zhangye and Luancheng, respectively and the duration of dew events ranged from 0.5 to 12.0 h in the two study sites. Dew amounts were associated with the gradient of atmospheric water vapor concentration and dew duration (P<0.001) in both the two sites. The result implies that dew events play a more important role in crop growth in arid areas in comparison to sub-humid areas considering the dew occurrence frequency and the amount per night.