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Drip irrigation and nitrogen management for improving crop yields, nitrogen use efficiency and water productivity of maize-wheat system on permanent beds in north-west India
- Sandhu, O.S., Gupta, R.K., Thind, H.S., Jat, M.L., Sidhu, H.S., Yadvinder-Singh,
- Agricultural water management 2019 v.219 pp. 19-26
- corn, crop rotation, crops, fertigation, field experimentation, flood irrigation, furrow irrigation, grain yield, groundwater, irrigation requirement, irrigation water, microirrigation, mulching, nitrogen, nutrient use efficiency, straw mulches, wheat, India
- The traditional flood irrigation system has led to overexploitation of ground water and low nitrogen (N) use efficiency. In north-western India, maize-based systems with lower irrigation requirement are being advocated as an alternate to rice-based systems to address the issues of declining water table. Bed planting of crops, straw mulching and drip irrigation are known to save precious irrigation water, and improve N use efficiency and grain yields. To this effect a two-year field experiment was conducted with annual wheat-maize rotation on permanent bed system to evaluate the effect of surface drip irrigation, residue management, and N application on crop and water productivity. Maize and wheat under drip irrigation with residue retention system showed significant grain yield increase of 13.7% and 23.1% compared to furrow irrigation with no residue, respectively. Surface drip irrigation with residue retention saved 88 mm and 168 mm of water and increased water productivity by 66% and 259% in wheat and maize on permanent beds compared to the conventional furrow irrigation system with residue removal, respectively. Similarly, fertigation at 10-day interval with five splits in wheat and seven splits in maize under drip irrigation system increased the mean N recovery efficiency by 16.5% and 29% compared to furrow irrigation in wheat and maize, respectively.