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Journal of Arid Land  2013, Vol. 5 Issue (1): 51-59    DOI: 10.1007/s40333-013-0141-7
Research Articles     
Effects of emitter discharge rates on soil salinity distribution and cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) yield under drip irrigation with plastic mulch in an arid region of Northwest China
1 State Key Laboratory of Desert and Oasis Ecology, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Urumqi 830011, China;
2 Xinjiang Institute of Water Resources and Hydroelectric Sciences, Urumqi 830049, China;
3 College of Water Conservancy and Civil Engineering, Xinjiang Agricultural University, Urumqi 830052, China
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Abstract   A field experiment was carried out to investigate the effects of different emitter discharge rates under drip irrigation on soil salinity distribution and cotton yield in an extreme arid region of Tarim River catchment in Northwest China. Four treatments of emitter discharge rates, i.e. 1.8, 2.2, 2.6 and 3.2 L/h, were designed under drip irrigation with plastic mulch in this paper. The salt distribution in the range of 70-cm horizontal distance and 100-cm vertical distance from the emitter was measured and analyzed during the cotton growing season. The soil salinity is expressed in terms of electrical conductivity (dS/m) of the saturated soil extract (ECe), which was measured using Time Domain Reflector (TDR) 20 times a year, including 5 irrigation events and 4 measured times before/after an irrigation event. All the treatments were repeated 3 times. The groundwater depth was observed by SEBA MDS Dipper 3 automatically at three experimental sites. The results showed that the order of reduction in averaged soil salinity was 2.6 L/h > 2.2 L/h > 1.8 L/h > 3.2 L/h after the completion of irrigation for the 3-year cotton growing season. Therefore, the choice of emitter discharge rate is considerably important in arid silt loam. Usually, the ideal emitter discharge rate is 2.4–3.0 L/h for soil desalinization with plastic mulch, which is advisable mainly because of the favorable salt leaching of silt loam and the climatic conditions in the studied arid area. Maximum cotton yield was achieved at the emitter discharge rate of 2.6 L/h under drip irrigation with plastic mulch in silty soil at the study site. Hence, the emitter discharge rate of 2.6 L/h is recommended for drip irrigation with plastic mulch applied in silty soil in arid regions.

Key wordscarbon sequestration      labile organic carbon      land use      cultivation      abandonment      Loess Plateau     
Received: 13 April 2012      Published: 06 March 2013

The National Basic Research Program of China (2009CB421302) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41071026, 51069017).

Corresponding Authors: Abudu SHALAMU     E-mail:
Cite this article:

Sulitan DANIERHAN, Abudu SHALAMU, Hudan TUMAERBAI, DongHai GUAN. Effects of emitter discharge rates on soil salinity distribution and cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) yield under drip irrigation with plastic mulch in an arid region of Northwest China. Journal of Arid Land, 2013, 5(1): 51-59.

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