2 Evapotranspiration Terminology Evaporation Transpiration Process of water movement, in the vapor form, into the atmosphere from soil, water, or plant surfacesTranspirationEvaporation of water from plant stomata into the atmosphereEvapotranspirationSum of evaporation and transpiration (abbreviated “ET”)Consumptive useSum of ET and the water taken up the plant and retained in the plant tissue (magnitude approximately equal to ET, and often used interchangeably)
3 Magnitude of ETGenerally tenths of an inch per day, or tens of inches per growing seasonVaries with type of plant, growth stage, weather, soil water content, etc.Transpiration ratioRatio of the mass of water transpired to the mass of plant dry matter produced (g H2O/g dry matter)Typical values: 250 for sorghum for wheat for alfalfa
4 Plant Water Use Patterns Daily Water Use: peaks late in afternoon; very little water use at nightAlfalfa: Ft. Cobb, OKJune 26, 1986
5 Plant Water Use Patterns Seasonal Use Pattern: Peak period affects designCorn Water Use PatternIrrigation system must be able to meet peak water use rate or the crop may be lost.
6 Evaporation Rate and Time Since Irrigation Energy or Water Availability as the Limiting Factor in ET Rate
7 Evapotranspiration Modeling Estimation based on:climatecropsoil factorsETc = Kc EToETc = actual crop evapotranspiration rateETo = the evapotranspiration rate for a reference cropKc = the crop coefficient
8 Evapotranspiration Modeling Reference Crop ET (ETo)ET rate of actively growing, well-watered, “reference” cropGrass or alfalfa used as the reference crop (alfalfa is higher)A measure of the amount of energy available for ETMany weather-based methods available for estimating ETo(FAO Blaney-Criddle; Jensen-Haise; Modified Penman; Penman-Montieth)Crop Coefficient (Kc)Empirical coefficient which incorporates type of crop & stage of growth (Kcb); and soil water status-- a dry soil (Ka) can limit ET; a wet soil surface (Ks) can increase soil evaporationKc = (Kcb x Ka) + KsKc values generally less than 1.0, but not always
9 One way to track real-time water use of your lawn and garden is to use the evapotranspiration model on the Mesonet Agweather page. Agweather is a free site with lots of management information for farmers and homeowners. Agweather is organized according to interest areas, such as Weather, Livestock, Crops, and Horticulture. Clicking on Horticulture . . .
10 . . . takes you to a page where you can select among Fruit & Nut, Ornamental, Turf and Vegetable options. Selecting Turf takes you to several more options, including an OSU Pest Diagnostics link, and one titled Evapotranspiration.
11 Selecting the Mesonet station nearest your location can be done either from the alphabetized, drop-down menu of stations or from the map. The dots representing the station locations on the map are active and will select the station if you click on them. Select your type of turf, either warm-season (Bermuda) or cool-season (fescue, ryegrass, etc.). Estimate the date that began actively growing (probably around mid-March for Bermuda grass). Then click “Get Turf Grass Data”.
12 Using the ET Table to Schedule Lawn Irrigation This brings us a table which shows the daily estimate of ET for the type of turf selected, showing the most recent days at the top of the table. The “ET” column is the water use for the day shown. The “ET_ACC” column show the cumulative ET for all days from the day at the top of the table (yesterday) going back successive days. For the example shown, yesterday’s ET was 0.19 inch of water, and the cumulative ET is also 0.19 inch. Going back to September 21 (day before yesterday) the ET is 0.20 inch and the cumulative ET is 0.19 (for yesterday) plus 0.20 (for day before yesterday) which equals 0.39 inch. The value of this information is– suppose it is the morning of September 23 and you last irrigated your lawn on September 17. Looking down the table you see the estimated cumulative water use from September 17 through yesterday is 1.23 inch. If you have turf rooted 12 inches deep in a Vanoss silt loam with a total of 1.20 inches of available water stored in the root zone after it is well irrigated– you need to water today. The water balance is meant to show accumulated water use, less any rainfall received, which should be the amount of irrigation required. However, in Oklahoma, if you are more than a few hundred yards away from a rain gauge the measured rainfall is of little value in judging your water balance. I would urge you to have one or more rain gauges on your property and use your local rainfall measurements rather that the Mesonet rainfall in any water balance irrigation scheduling work.
13 Efficiencies and Uniformities Application efficiency (Ea)dn = net irrigation depthdg = gross irrigation depthfraction or percentageWater lossesEvaporationDriftRunoffDeep percolation
15 Application Uniformity Distribution uniformity (DU)dLQ = average low-quarter depth of water receiveddz = average depth appliedPopular parameter for surface irrigation systems in particular
16 Application Uniformity Cont’d… Christiansen’s Coefficient of Uniformity (CU)n = number of observations (each representing the same size area)dz = average depth for all observationsdi = depth for observation iPopular parameter for sprinkler and microirrigation systems in particularFor relatively high uniformities (CU > 70%), Eq. 5.4 and 5.5 relate CU to DU
17 Turf Sprinkler Uniformity Test (catch cans placed on a 5 ft x 5 ft grid)
20 AdequacyBecause of nonuniformity, there is a tradeoff between excessive deep percolation and plant water stressAdequacy: the percent of the irrigated area that receives the desired depth of water or moreFigure 5.3Plotting the percentage of area in the field that receives a given depth of irrigation water or more gives a distribution uniformity curveIrrigating for a longer or shorter time moves the curve up or downSystem modifications may be required to change the shape of the curve
28 Application Efficiency of The Low Quarter (AELQ) Ratio of the average low-quarter depth of water that infiltrates and is stored in the crop root zone relative to the average depth of water applied (x 100 for %)AELQ = DU when all applied water infiltratesAlso AELH (low-half)Accurate rules of thumbfor 90% adequacy, apply a gross depth = (desired net depth)/AELQ (acceptable for higher-valued crops)For 80% adequacy, apply a gross depth = (desired net depth)/AELH (acceptable for lower-valued crops)
29 System Capacity Net system capacity (Qn) Peak ET method: Function of plant needs (keep soil water balance above some specified level)The rate at which water must be stored in the root zonePeak ET method:Provide enough capacity to meet peak ET over a given time periodLess conservative method:Recognize that rainfall and/or soil water can allow a reduced capacityWater stored in the soil can provide a buffer over short time periodsAlso, over longer time periods, concept of an allowable depletion (AD) -- amount of water that can be depleted from the soil before plant stress occurs
30 System Capacity Gross system capacity (Qg) The rate at which water must be supplied by the water sourceA function of:the net system capacity, Qnthe efficiency of the irrigation systemthe system downtime
31 System Capacity Definition Required system capacity is the water supply rate that must be provided to prevent plant water stress (may or may not = actual system capacity)Units could be inches per day or gpm per acre or gpm over a given area (Qn & Qg must be in consistent units)Qg = gross system capacity, in/day or gpm/AQn = net system capacity, in/day or gpm/AAELQ = application efficiency of low quarter, (%)Dt = irrigation system downtime (%)
32 Operational Terminology Set or zone:Smallest portion of the total area that can be irrigated separatelyApplication time :Length of time that water is applied to a set/zoneSet time :Time between starting successive sets in a fieldApplication time = set time if system is not stopped to change sets (automated vs. manual systems
33 Operational Terminology Cycle time or irrigation interval:Length of time between successive irrigationsIdle time:Time during the irrigation interval that the system is not operatedDuration:Time that water is provided to the farm by an irrigation districtRotation:Time between times when the water is provided by the district