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Furrow Irrigated Cotton on Clayey Soil in the Lower Mississippi River Valley
- Pitts, D. J., Wright, R. E., Kimbrough, J. A., Johnson, D. R.
- Applied engineering in agriculture 1990 v.6 no.4 pp. 446-452
- Gossypium, agricultural engineering, arid lands, clay soils, economic analysis, furrow irrigation, irrigation scheduling, seed cotton, soil water, valleys, water stress, yields
- A majority of cotton currently grown in the lower Mississippi River Valley is under dryland production. A three-year field study was conducted to evaluate furrow irrigation as a production practice for cotton (Gossypium hirsutus L.) grown on clayey soils. Soil-water potential (SWP) was used as the primary method for scheduling irrigation. Three other methods, soil-water deficit (SWD), leaf-water potential (LWP), and crop water stress index (CWSI), were compared to SWP as means for determining irrigation timing. Irrigation resulted in a significant yield increase over non-irrigated cotton in each year of the study. The mean yield was 3470 kg/ha (3090 lb/acre) for the irrigated cotton and 2312 kg/ha (2059 lb/acre) for the non-irrigated, which resulted in an average annual increase of 1158 kg/ha (1031 lb/acre) of seed cotton. An economic analysis comparing cost to benefit of irrigation on cotton showed an average annual return of $240 ha-1 ($97 acre-1).