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Quantified analysis and yield forecasting of selected land use systems in the Almudevar district (North-East Spain)

AuthorsFaro Turmo, María Dolores
AdvisorDriessen, P. M.; Van Mensvoort, M. E. F.
KeywordsLand evaluation
crop growth modelling
yield forecasting
Issue Date1998
PublisherWageningen Agricultural University
CitationTesis doctorales EEAD-CSIC
AbstractAlmudévar district is located North-East Spain. It is characterized by Mediterranean climatic conditions with high variability over the year and between years. Land suitability of this selected land units in the area for maize and barley was quantified using a dynamic crop growth simulation model to describe the biophysical and water-constraint production potential. The model was calibrated for biophysical production potential using field data of 1996 for maize and of 1992-93 for barley. The model was applied to calculate production potentials for other years to examine the effects of the variable Mediterranean climatic conditions, and good results were obtained for all these years. Moreover, yield forecasting using this model resulted in less than 10 % error for both crops in the years under study. The biophysical production potential was used to identify the effects of diff erent sowing dates and amounts of seed. For maize, early sowing and a sowing density of 10 to 20 kgha·1 gave the best results, whereas in the case of barley, late sowing and 200 kgha·1 gave the highest yield productions.
The model of the water-limited production potential was used to evaluate the prospects for rainf ed farming and possible improvements in in-igation management. Rainf ed bar ley productions over the years produced less than 70 % of the biophysical production potential In the case of maize, irrigation is always required for satisfactory crop production. Rainf ed maize was only productive on Calcic Cambisols and Satine Cambisols, whereas shallow soils and Gleysols proved to be unsuitable. Irrigation management was studied by comparing alternative scenarios with diff erent water inputs and irrigation intervals. For maize, water inputs of 400 or 500 mm applied with irrigation intervals of 10-14 days gave the highest productions, with low hazards of salinization. Yields could be forecast at the moment of ear initiation with less than 10 % error. For barley, doses of at least 200 mm, applied every 10-14 days, gave the best results, with almost no possibilities of salinization of soils, and a yield forecasting with less than 10 % error. For both land utilization types, the Calcic Cambisols and Saline Cambisols are "Highly Suitable", whereas shallow soils were classified as "Not Suitable", and Gleysols as "Marginally suitable" only in thc case of barley.
Description98 Pags.- 19 Figs.- 8 Tabls. Thesis of the author directed by the Drs. P. M. Driessen and M. E .F. Van Mensvoort, made, in part, after a staying period in the Servicio de Investigación Agraria (Aula Dei Campus), under the guide and assistance of Dr. Juan Herrero Isern (EEAD-CSIC researcher).
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