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Open AccessArticle

A Smart Irrigation Tool to Determine the Effects of ENSO on Water Requirements for Tomato Production in Mozambique

1
Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA
2
CAPES Foundation, Ministry of Education of Brazil, Brasilia, DF 70040-020, Brazil
3
Horticultural Sciences Department, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA
4
Mozambique Institute of Agricultural Research, Maputo 3658, Mozambique
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(12), 1820; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10121820
Received: 29 September 2018 / Revised: 4 December 2018 / Accepted: 5 December 2018 / Published: 10 December 2018
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Abstract

Irrigation scheduling is used by growers to determine the right amount and timing of water application. In most parts of Mozambique, 90% of the total yearly precipitation occurs from November to March. The El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon influences the climate in Mozambique and affects the water demand for crop production. The objectives of this work were to quantify the effects of ENSO phenomenon on tomato crop water requirements, and to create the AgroClimate irrigation tool (http://mz.agroclimate.org/) to assist farmers in improving irrigation management. This study was based on daily grid-based climate information from 1983 to 2016 from the Climate Forecast System Reanalysis. Daily crop evapotranspiration was calculated by Hargreaves equation and crop coefficients. This tool is available online and considers different planting dates, ENSO phases, and crop growing season lengths. Irrigation needs varied from less than 250 mm per growing cycle during winter to 550 mm during spring. Both El Niño and La Niña influenced the irrigation scheduling, especially from November to March. El Niño periods were related to increased water demand due to drier and warmer conditions, while the opposite was observed for La Niña. The ENSO information might be used to understand climate variability and improve tomato irrigation scheduling in Mozambique. View Full-Text
Keywords: Irrigation scheduling; Solanum lycopersicum; El Niño; water stress; decision support system; climate variability Irrigation scheduling; Solanum lycopersicum; El Niño; water stress; decision support system; climate variability
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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MDPI and ACS Style

Gelcer, E.; Fraisse, C.W.; Zotarelli, L.; Perondi, D.; Malia, H.A.; Ecole, C.C.; Migliaccio, K.W. A Smart Irrigation Tool to Determine the Effects of ENSO on Water Requirements for Tomato Production in Mozambique. Water 2018, 10, 1820.

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