AbstractAs a state with the most irrigated agricultural land in the United States, Nebraska relies on freshwater resources for its irrigation. In addition to these conventional water sources, using nonconventional alternatives for crop production can be important during water shortage times. In this research, effluent from a feedlot lagoon was used as an irrigation water source at a subsurface drip irrigation (SDI) system for corn (C) and sugar beet (SB) production in western Nebraska during the 2019 and 2021 growing seasons. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of air injection on C and SB yield when using feedlot runoff as an irrigation source in a SDI system. Results indicated that air injection treatment (O), compared to noninjection treatment (NO), increased corn yield by 5.50% in the 2019 growing season, yet differences were not significant. During the 2021 growing season, O significantly increased corn yield by 9.17% (p = 0.04). Differences in irrigation water productivity (IWP) of NO (14.19±1.90  kg ha−1 mm−1) and O (14.86±1.79  kg ha−1 mm−1) were not significant during the 2019 growing season while significant differences in IWP of NO (22.61±5.88  kg ha−1 mm−1) and O (24.68±4.55  kg ha−1 mm−1) were observed during the 2021 growing season (p = 0.004). In sugar beets, no significant difference was observed in crop yield or sucrose yield between O and NO during both growing seasons. Differences in IWP were not significant during the 2019 growing season (NO: 0.10±0.02  kg ha−1 mm−1, O: 0.10±0.03  kg ha−1 mm−1) and 2021 growing season (NO: 0.10±0.04  kg ha−1 mm−1, O: 0.09 ±0.02  kg ha−1 mm−1).

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