Main content area

Response of confection sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) grown in a semi‐arid environment to planting date and early termination of irrigation

Joshi, V. R., Heitholt, J. J., Garcia y Garcia, A.
Journal of agronomy and crop science 2017 v.203 no.4 pp. 301-308
Helianthus annuus, irrigation management, planting date, seeds, semiarid zones, soil texture, water utilization, weather, yield components, Wyoming
Adjustments on planting date and on the time to terminate irrigation may reduce agricultural water use. However, such management practices in regions with extreme weather conditions have the potential to negatively affect yield. A 3‐year (2012–2014) study was conducted on a clay‐loam soil in a cool, semi‐arid environment to (i) determine the response of confection sunflower to planting date and irrigation termination timing and (ii) identify the relative importance of yield components in irrigated confection sunflower across planting dates. Early May planting had considerable negative effects on all studied variables, except on the percentage of large seeds. The highest yield of total and large seeds was obtained from the late May plantings, averaging 3,777 and 3,379 kg/ha, respectively. None of the irrigation strategies affected the measured variables. However, the interaction between planting date and termination of irrigation significantly affected the 1,000‐seed weight. Our study revealed the last week of May as suitable planting period for confection sunflower in the semi‐arid north‐western region of Wyoming, USA, and that irrigation on heavy soils may be terminated as early as at R5.5 stage without a significant yield reduction. The path‐coefficient analysis indicated head diameter and the number of seeds per head as important traits that significantly influence the yield of confection sunflower across planting dates.