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Science, Technology and Development Vol. 36 (2), 2017
Research Article
Impacts of Furrow Cover Plastic Sheet on Crop Water Productivity and Salt Distribution in the Soil Profile
Muhammad Sohail Memon, Fahim Ullah, Kausar Ali and Noreena Memon
 
Abstract: In this paper, we have discussed about the crop water productivity and salt distribution in the soil profile of semi-arid and arid areas with the increasing demand for water in the country. This necessitates the introduction and development of low input and water saving technologies for sustainable crop production. Keeping in view, the importance of plastic sheet for irrigation water conservation, an experimental study was conducted to minimize crop water productivity and salt distribution in the soil profile from the bottom, using plastic sheet. The seeds of okra were sown manually with a plant to plant spacing of 25 cm and irrigation was applied with an interval of 6-8 days and measured with cut-throat flume. The soil samples were taken at soil depths of 20-80 cm before and after experiment for soil analysis. The experimental results revealed that the soil pH decreased after harvest under T1 and average dry density of soil was increased as 0.01 g/cm3 after harvest under both treatments (T0 and T1). Similarly, ECe of the soil profile depth-wise increased slightly under T0 but there was more increase in ECe of soil profile under treatment T1 due to plastic sheet. The okra yield was noted 7,575 kg/ha and 8,332 kg/ha, the total volume of irrigation water applied was 31.09 m3 and 21.56 m3 under treatments T0 and T1, respectively. Water saving was 52.22% and 31% under T1 and T0, respectively, when compared to flood irrigation method. The crop water productivity of 2.5 kg/m3 was obtained from treatment T1, followed by T0, where crop water productivity was only 1.6 kg/m3. However, an overall improvement, in term of water saving and crop yield, was obtained when plastic sheets were integrated with furrows. Hence, it is recommended that the plastic sheets may be used in furrow irrigation to minimize salt distribution and enhance the crop water productivity in the soil profile from furrow bottoms.
 
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