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Evaluation of net return and grain quality characteristics of wheat for various irrigation strategies under the Mediterranean climatic conditions

Alghory, Adnan, Yazar, Attila
Agricultural water management 2018 v.203 pp. 395-404
Triticum aestivum, climatic factors, deficit irrigation, dry season, filling period, flowering, gluten, grain quality, grain yield, income, irrigation rates, protein content, water requirement, water stress, wet season, wheat, Mediterranean region
This study evaluated the effect of different supplemental and conventional irrigation strategies on economical parameters, yield and grain quality characteristics of wheat (Triticum aestivum L., cv. Adana 99) using sprinkler line-source system during 2014 and 2015 seasons in the Mediterranean region. The irrigation strategies were Conventional irrigation (CI), Supplemental irrigation (SI) during flowering (SIF), SI during grain filling (SIG), SI both during flowering and grain filling (SIFG). These strategies were tested under four irrigation levels 100, 75, 50, 25% of crop water requirement, and a rain-fed treatment was included as control.Conventional full irrigation (CI100) treatment achieved the highest grain yield and maximum net return in both seasons. The higher deficit irrigation treatments resulted in negative net return in dry season but positive in wet season. SIFG100 and SIF100 generated a net return of 668.53 and 424.22 $/ha, respectively. CI75 produced more yield and net income in comparison with SIFG100 that although irrigation amount was less but the yield and net income were 26 and 7.65% greater; furthermore CI75 saved 23.3% of water with small grain yield reduction of 4.45% as compared to CI100. Therefore CI75 can be recommended to maximize yield and net income under scarce water conditions.In this study, higher water stress occurring in the dry year helped to improve the grain quality and made it richer than wet year. The findings showed positive response between the quality parameters such as protein content, wet gluten content and sedimentation volume, and water stress. SIFG75 treatment was the best irrigation strategy for high grain quality parameters (with small yield reduction as compared to CI100). It could be recommended to obtain high yield and good quality indicators under Mediterranean conditions.