Mulching as a means of producing vegetable crops under a limited water supply
Committee ChairSchonhorst, Melvin H.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThe effect of five mulch treatments (barley and wheat straw) on the soil and plant water relations of tomato, pepper and cantaloupe plants was compared with the control, unmulched treatment during the summer of 1983. Also, the effect of mulch on soil temperature and plant yield was evaluated. Plantings were made in moist soil which had been flood irrigated to saturation three days before planting. The main objective for using the mulch was to reduce evaporation from this initial irrigation, and therefore have more available water for plant use. Plants in two mulch treatments received limited amounts of water through a drip system; plant growth in the remaining treatments depended on rainfall. All mulch treatments produced higher yields than the non-mulched control in all vegetables studied. This resulted from improved plant and soil water, and temperature regimes.
Degree ProgramPlant Sciences