I. García-Tejero, V.H. Durán-Zuazo, J.A. Jiménez-Bocanegra, R. Romero , J.L. Muriel-Fernández
Three different deficit-irrigation strategies were studied: sustained deficit irri-gation (SDI), regulated deficit irrigation (RDI), and low-frequency deficit irrigation (LFDI) in different commercial citrus orchards located in the Guadalquivir river basin SW Spain. Each irrigation treatment was based on different water-stress ratio (WSR), which is the ratio of water supplied to deficit-irrigation treatment with respect to the control treatment (100% ETC). Midday stem-water potential (ΨStem) was measured during the irrigation periods and was used to caracterize plant-water status. Also, integrated stem-water potential (ΨInt) was calculated for all treatments and used as a timing water-stress indicator for the crop. Yield and fruit quality were evaluated at harvest in each treatment taking into account the temporal and spatial variability, associated mainly with local weather conditions, and agronomic orchard management. Relationships among water applied, ΨInt and yield response were performed to quantify the effects of deficit irrigation on yield and fruit-quality parameters. Analysis of data showed that, in all cases, the irrigation-water restriction significantly affected yield and some fruit-quality parameters (total soluble solids, titratable acidity, and maturity index). The results confirmed that the water productivity (WP) was positively related to water amount and irrigation strategy applied. Consequently, when WSR of 0.70 was applied (moderate deficit irrigation) RDI strategy showed better results than the SDI. However, with WSR of 0.60 (severe water reduction), LFDI strategy provided the best crop response. Under Mediterranean climate and water scarcity conditions, the application of DI strategies allowed water savings up to 1000 m3 ha-1 yr-1. In DI treatments, the total water applied was better correlated with WP than with yield, indicating that this parameter should be used when trying to improve irrigation management.
García-Tejero, I., Durán-Zuazo, V.H., Jiménez-Bocanegra, J.A., Romero , R. and Muriel-Fernández, J.L. (2011). YIELD RESPONSE OF CITRUS TREES TO DIFFERENT IRRIGATION STRATEGIES IN GUADALQUIVIR RIVER BASIN (SW SPAIN). Acta Hortic. 922, 83-90
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2011.922.10
water productivity, deficit-irrigation, stem-water potential, fruit yield

Acta Horticulturae