Special Issue "Water Management of Horticultural Crops"

A special issue of Horticulturae (ISSN 2311-7524).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 November 2018)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Amelia Montoro

ITAP, Albacete 02080, Spain
Website | E-Mail

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Water is one of the most important plant growth regulators, and how well we manage it will influence our future well-being. Because of their higher value and more intense cultural practices, horticultural crops are better suited for adaptation to improved water-saving technologies than are many agronomic crops (Parson, 2000). The demand for water is currently increasing, while water resources are scarce. This is a reality that we have to face with the help of research, the technique, and the correct management of the resource.

The purpose of this Special Issue “Water Management of Horticultural Crops” is to present innovative studies, tools, approaches, and reviews that have been successful in this field: Irrigation management, irrigation advisory services, role of technology in irrigation, diverse experiences in extension, and in general, any innovation that improves the efficiency of water use in horticultural crops.

Dr. Amelia Montoro
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Horticulturae is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) is waived for well-prepared manuscripts submitted to this issue. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Irrigation Extension
  • Irrigation Advisory Services
  • Irrigation management
  • Evapotranspiration
  • Evaporation
  • Transpiration
  • Water use efficiency
  • Irrigation techniques

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Variable Pulsed Irrigation Algorithm (VPIA) to Reduce Runoff Losses under a Low-Pressure Lateral Move Irrigation Machine
Horticulturae 2019, 5(1), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae5010010
Received: 12 December 2018 / Revised: 15 January 2019 / Accepted: 18 January 2019 / Published: 22 January 2019
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Abstract
Due to restrictions and limitations on agricultural water worldwide, one of the most effective ways to conserve water in this sector is to reduce the water losses and improve irrigation uniformity. Nowadays, the low-pressure sprinkler has been widely used to replace the high-pressure [...] Read more.
Due to restrictions and limitations on agricultural water worldwide, one of the most effective ways to conserve water in this sector is to reduce the water losses and improve irrigation uniformity. Nowadays, the low-pressure sprinkler has been widely used to replace the high-pressure impact sprinklers in lateral move sprinkler irrigation systems due to its low operating cost and high efficiency. However, the hazard of surface runoff represents the biggest obstacle for low-pressure sprinkler systems. Most researchers have used the pulsing technique to apply variable-rate irrigation to match the crop water needs within a normal application rate that does not produce runoff. This research introduces a variable pulsed irrigation algorithm (VPIA) based on an ON–OFF pulsing technique to conserve irrigation water through (1) decreasing the runoff losses by considering the soil infiltration rate, surface storage capacity, and sprinkler wetting diameter; and (2) ensuring a high level of water distribution uniformity in the direction of machine movement. From a wide range of pulse numbers and widths tested applying a certain water depth to a sandy loam soil, the best solution that gives the lowest runoff and highest uniformity while delivering an acceptable water depth was selected. A MATLAB code was written to simulate the soil infiltration rate, the sprinkler application rate, and to apply the proposed algorithm. The simulation results showed a runoff reduction of at least 90.7% with a high level of distribution uniformity in the direction of movement while delivering the highest possible irrigation depth using the lowest number of pulses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Management of Horticultural Crops)
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Open AccessArticle
Assessing the Impact of Reference Evapotranspiration Models on Decision Support Systems for Irrigation
Horticulturae 2018, 4(4), 49; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae4040049
Received: 26 September 2018 / Revised: 2 November 2018 / Accepted: 19 November 2018 / Published: 28 November 2018
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Abstract
Reference evapotranspiration (ET0) is a major estimator for crop water requirements predicted by decision support systems for irrigation. However, the impact of different ET0s on the predicted amount of water supply and counts of irrigation events [...] Read more.
Reference evapotranspiration (E T 0) is a major estimator for crop water requirements predicted by decision support systems for irrigation. However, the impact of different E T 0s on the predicted amount of water supply and counts of irrigation events has not been evaluated. Simulations of the Geisenheim Irrigation Scheduling (GS) for vegetable crops with two different E T 0s, P2-E T 0 and FAO56-E T 0, were evaluated to assess exemplarily the impact of E T 0s. The sensitivity of both E T 0s to local climate conditions was characterized through a random forest analysis, and a linear regression model was used to adjust the original GS by adapting K c-values to the exchange E T 0. For assessing the outcomes of GS irrigation decision, simulations of 173 individual cropping cycles including six vegetable crops over eight years were conducted. After adjusting P2-E T 0 K c-values to FAO56-E T 0 K c-values, there was no impact of the E T 0-model on the practical irrigation scheduling with GS. Finally, we discuss that any E T 0-model, if adjusted accordingly, might have little impact on similar irrigation systems and provide a method to exchange E T 0s. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Management of Horticultural Crops)
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Open AccessArticle
Impact of Water Deficit during Fruit Development on Quality and Yield of Young Table Grape Cultivars
Horticulturae 2018, 4(4), 45; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae4040045
Received: 28 September 2018 / Revised: 28 October 2018 / Accepted: 19 November 2018 / Published: 23 November 2018
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Abstract
Water limitation has a major effect on agricultural crop production, influencing yield as well as external and internal quality parameters of table grapes. Due to their high yield potential, table grapes have a particularly high risk for yield and quality losses when water [...] Read more.
Water limitation has a major effect on agricultural crop production, influencing yield as well as external and internal quality parameters of table grapes. Due to their high yield potential, table grapes have a particularly high risk for yield and quality losses when water is limited, but grapevines are known for high heterogeneity within cultivars. Therefore, we investigated the effect of prolonged water deficits (control, moderate, and severe deficit) during fruit development on yield and quality parameters of four different table grape cultivars (Vitis L.). Furthermore, we ranked their suitability for cultivation in areas suffering from water limitation. Up to 31% of irrigation water could be saved in comparison to the control, without significant negative effects on plant yield, berry size, or internal quality parameters, such as total soluble solids and total phenolic content. However, single bunch yield was highest at a moderate deficit and number of seeds in berries increased with the severity of deficit. Cultivar selection had the greatest influence on water consumption and mainly defined yield and quality parameters. The cultivar ‘Fanny’ produced the highest yields (195.17 g per plant), most bunches per plant (2.04), and biggest berries while cv. ‘Nero’ had the highest total soluble solids content (26.33 °Brix) and the highest total phenolic content (67.53 mg gallic acid equivalents per 100 g fresh weight). Overall, ‘Fanny’ was the most promising cultivar for cultivation under water-limited conditions during fruit development, without significant effects on yield and quality parameters. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Management of Horticultural Crops)
Open AccessArticle
Large-Scale Spatial Modeling of Crop Coefficient and Biomass Production in Agroecosystems in Southeast Brazil
Horticulturae 2018, 4(4), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae4040044
Received: 4 October 2018 / Revised: 13 November 2018 / Accepted: 19 November 2018 / Published: 22 November 2018
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Abstract
Sentinel-2 images at 10-m resolution were used for modeling crop coefficients and biomass production with the application of the so-called SAFER (Simple Algorithm for Evapotranspiration Retrieving) and Monteith model for biomass production in an area nearby the city of Águas de Santa Bárbara, [...] Read more.
Sentinel-2 images at 10-m resolution were used for modeling crop coefficients and biomass production with the application of the so-called SAFER (Simple Algorithm for Evapotranspiration Retrieving) and Monteith model for biomass production in an area nearby the city of Águas de Santa Bárbara, in the central-western part of São Paulo State, Brazil, which presents a vast agricultural landscape mosaic, to analyze the effects of the end of the recent ENSO’s (El Niño-Southern Oscillation) most active period (2016/2017) and its posteriori effects on vegetation (until early 2018). Surface albedo, temperature, net radiation, and NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) from the main land uses were extracted to process microclimatic comparisons. Crop coefficient (dimensionless) and biomass production (kg·ha−1·day−1) ranges for the period studied were 0.92–1.35 and 22–104 kg·ha1·day1 (in the area occupied by sugarcane crop), 0.56–0.94 and 15–73 kg·ha1·day1 (pasture), 1.17–1.56 and 25–210 kg·ha1·day1 (silviculture), and 1.05–1.36 and 30–134 kg·ha−1·day−1 (forest). According to the spatial and temporal consistencies, and after comparison with previous point and large-scale studies with similar climatic and thermal conditions, the SAFER and Monteith modelsshowed the ability to quantify and differentiate the large-scale crop coefficients and biomass production of different land uses in the southeast Brazil region. The SAFER algorithm with Sentinel-2 images obtained crop coefficients that indicated plant growth stages and local thermohydrological conditions at a 10-m resolution. The results are important for land use, crop yield and reforestation planning, and for water management plans for actual and future water demand scenarios, and this methodology is useful for monitoring rural and water parameters, and for precision agriculture applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Management of Horticultural Crops)
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Graphical abstract

Open AccessCommunication
Aerated Irrigation and Pruning Residue Biochar on N2O Emission, Yield and Ion Uptake of Komatsuna
Horticulturae 2018, 4(4), 33; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae4040033
Received: 2 September 2018 / Revised: 9 October 2018 / Accepted: 12 October 2018 / Published: 15 October 2018
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Abstract
After irrigation in intensive vegetable cultivation, the soil is filled with water leading to reduced oxygen content of the soil air which will affect vegetable growth and soil N2O emission. In this study, the effect of aerated irrigation and residue biochar [...] Read more.
After irrigation in intensive vegetable cultivation, the soil is filled with water leading to reduced oxygen content of the soil air which will affect vegetable growth and soil N2O emission. In this study, the effect of aerated irrigation and residue biochar on soil N2O emission, yield, and ion uptake of komatsuna grown in Andosol was explored. The experiment included four treatments; control (tap water irrigation), aerated water irrigation, pruning residue biochar with tap water irrigation, and a combination of aerated irrigation and biochar. The results showed that aerated irrigation had no effect on plant growth, but it also increased N2O emission by 12.3% for several days after planting. Plant ion uptake was not affected by aerated irrigation. Biochar amendment increased shoot dry weight and significantly reduced soil N2O emission by 27.9% compared with the control. Plant uptake of N and K also increased with biochar. This study showed that pruning residue biochar has the potential to mitigate N2O emission while increasing vegetable growth and plant nutrient uptake. However, the study soil, Andosol, already has high soil porosity with low bulk density. Thus, further injection of air through irrigation showed no effect on plant growth but increased N2O emission, hence soil aeration was not a limiting factor in Andosol. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Management of Horticultural Crops)
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