IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Increasing the effective use of water in processing tomatoes through alternate furrow irrigation without a yield decrease


  • Barrios-Masias, Felipe H.
  • Jackson, Louise E.


Surface irrigation represents >85% of irrigated agriculture worldwide. Partial root zone drying (PRD) is a technique for improving crop water productivity (WP), and in practice can be applied as alternate furrow irrigation (AFI). A series of research station and on-farm trials were conducted in two consecutive years and three soil types to evaluate processing tomato crop performance under AFI vs every furrow irrigation (EFI). Crop growth and leaf gas exchange, fruit biomass and quality, soil moisture and water applied were evaluated, and changes in irrigation WP (WPi) determined in response to PRD. The AFI was consistent in maintaining fresh yields across cultivars and environmental conditions (i.e., years and soil textures) with at least 25% lower irrigation volumes than commonly applied under EFI. WPi increased by >29% and maintained fruit quality under AFI. Canopy growth was slightly lower, and a tighter plant regulation of stomatal conductance (gs) with only a small decrease in photosynthetic rates (Pn) was observed under AFI. Our results demonstrate that for California processing tomatoes AFI is effective in reducing agricultural water needs. Because of the extent of furrow irrigation worldwide, AFI can contribute to maintain highly productive agricultural land under production with lower water supply.

Suggested Citation

  • Barrios-Masias, Felipe H. & Jackson, Louise E., 2016. "Increasing the effective use of water in processing tomatoes through alternate furrow irrigation without a yield decrease," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 177(C), pages 107-117.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:agiwat:v:177:y:2016:i:c:p:107-117
    DOI: 10.1016/j.agwat.2016.07.006

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kang, Shaozhong & Liang, Zongsuo & Pan, Yinhua & Shi, Peize & Zhang, Jianhua, 2000. "Alternate furrow irrigation for maize production in an arid area," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 267-274, August.
    2. Hutton, R.J. & Loveys, B.R., 2011. "A partial root zone drying irrigation strategy for citrus--Effects on water use efficiency and fruit characteristics," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 98(10), pages 1485-1496, August.
    3. Perry, Chris, 2011. "Accounting for water use: Terminology and implications for saving water and increasing production," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 98(12), pages 1840-1846, October.
    4. Zegbe, J. A. & Behboudian, M. H. & Clothier, B. E., 2004. "Partial rootzone drying is a feasible option for irrigating processing tomatoes," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 195-206, August.
    5. Cantore, V. & Lechkar, O. & Karabulut, E. & Sellami, M.H. & Albrizio, R. & Boari, F. & Stellacci, A.M. & Todorovic, M., 2016. "Combined effect of deficit irrigation and strobilurin application on yield, fruit quality and water use efficiency of “cherry” tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.)," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 167(C), pages 53-61.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:agiwat:v:177:y:2016:i:c:p:107-117. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.