Effect of irrigation rate on Sudan grass yield, grown as a second crop

R. Bazitov*

Agricultural Institute, 6000 Stara Zagora, Bulgaria

(Manuscript received 24 October 2020; accepted for publication 12 May 2021)

Abstract. The aim of the present study was to establish the effect of irrigation rate on the yield of Sudan grass variety Engje-1, grown as a second crop for silage on meadow-cinnamon soil for the region of Southern Bulgaria. For this purpose, an experiment with Sudan grass variety Endje-1 on the experimental field of the Agricultural Institute – Stara Zagora, after its predecessor barley, was conducted. The Sudan grass was harvested in the brooming stage. Five variants were explored: Variant 1 – without irrigation (control); Variant 2 – with optimal irrigation, 75-80% of field capacity (FC); Variant 3 – irrigation as Var.2 but with removal of the first watering; Variant 4 – irrigation as Var.2 but with removal of the second watering; Variant 5 – irrigation as Var.2, but with removal of the third watering. It was found that the efficiency of 1m3 of irrigation water was the highest at the optimum variant (Var.2), where 5.36 kg of dry mass (DM) were produced by 1 m3 of water. With the removal of the second irrigation (Var.4), the yield on the dry mass decreased by 6.4% compared to the optimal variant (Var.2), and with the removal of the first irrigation (Var.3) the losses on the dry mass reached, 12.3%, respectively. The highest values of this indicator were obtained by varying the second irigation (Vаr.4) – 7.53 kgDM/m3 water. The coefficient of efficiency of the irrigation rate, representing the ratio between the increase of the yield (in comparison with the version without irrigation – Vаr.1), and the size of the realized irrigation norm had the highest value in the version without second irrigation (Vаr.4) and the lowest values for the version without first irrigation (Vаr.3).