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Furrow compaction for controlling excessive irrigation water intake
- Musick, J.T., Pringle, F.B., Johnson, P.N.
- Transactions of the ASAE 1985 v.28 no.2 pp. 502
- furrow irrigation, soil compaction
- A field study was conducted on Olton clay loam to evaluate effects of increasing irrigated furrow spacing from 0.75 to 1.5 m and furrow compaction on irrigation water intake, evapotranspiration, estimated profile drainage losses, and corn yields. Wide spacing of furrows had very little effect, while wheel compaction reduced the average water intake during seasonal irrigation; tractor-wheel compaction from multiple field operations increased average dry soil bulk densities. Irrigated furrows were compacted as a separate tractor pass prior to the preplant irrigation, and effects remained through the growing season. The reduced water intake with furrow compaction did not affect corn grain yields. Alternating compacted and noncompacted furrows permits flexibility in irrigating for a range in water intake, depending on water use rates and profile soil water depletion. Irrigation of compacted furrows permits the use of a fixed pumping rate to irrigate a larger area by reducing profile drainage and increasing field application efficiency.