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Analysis and modelling of the effects of water stress on maize growth and yield in dryland conditions


Song, Y and Birch, CJ and Qu, S and Doherty, A and Hanan, J, Analysis and modelling of the effects of water stress on maize growth and yield in dryland conditions, Plant Production Science, 13, (2) pp. 199-208. ISSN 1343-943X (2010) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

Copyright 2010 by The Crop Science Society of Japan

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DOI: doi:10.1626/pps.13.199


It is essential to provide experimental evidence and reliable predictions of the effects of water stress on crop production in the drier, less predictable environments. A field experiment undertaken in southeast Queensland, Australia with three water regimes (fully irrigated, rainfed and irrigated until late canopy expansion followed by rainfed) was used to compare effects of water stress on crop production in two maize (Zea mays L.) cultivars (Pioneer 34N43 and Pioneer 31H50). Water stress affected growth and yield more in Pioneer 34N43 than in Pioneer 31H50. A crop model APSIM-Maize, after having been calibrated for the two cultivars, was used to simulate maize growth and development under water stress. The predictions on leaf area index (LAI) dynamics, biomass growth and grain yield under rainfed and irrigated followed by rainfed treatments was reasonable, indicating that stress indices used by APSIM-Maize produced appropriate adjustments to crop growth and development in response to water stress. This study shows that Pioneer 31H50 is less sensitive to water stress and thus a preferred cultivar in dryland conditions, and that it is feasible to provide sound predictions and risk assessment for crop production in drier, more variable conditions using the APSIM-Maize model.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:APSIM, crop production, drought, model, rainfed, Zea mays
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Agriculture, land and farm management
Research Field:Agricultural production systems simulation
Objective Division:Plant Production and Plant Primary Products
Objective Group:Grains and seeds
Objective Field:Maize
UTAS Author:Birch, CJ (Associate Professor Colin Birch)
ID Code:59154
Year Published:2010
Web of Science® Times Cited:20
Deposited By:Agricultural Science
Deposited On:2009-11-19
Last Modified:2012-11-26
Downloads:5 View Download Statistics

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