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A survey of the combined effects of waterlogging and salinity on fruit yield in the date palm groves of the Wargla basin, Algeria

Daddi Bouhoun M., Marlet S., Brinis L., Lakhdar Saker M., Rabier J., Côte M.. 2011. Fruits, 66 (1) : p. 11-24.

DOI: 10.1051/fruits/2010037

Introduction. While researchers have paid considerable attention to the effect of soil salinity on crop yield, methodological impediments remain when salinity is combined with other growth factors, especially in farmers' fields. A specific methodology was adapted to assess the effect of waterlogging and salinity on date palm yield ( Phoenix dactylifera L. cv. Deglet Noor). Materials and methods. Date palm yield, water table depth, irrigation water, groundwater and soil salinity were measured in 167 field plots located in five irrigation sectors of the Wargla basin (Algeria). Variance analysis and a boundary line approach were combined to analyze actual and potential yields according to environmental stresses. Results and discussion. High soil salinity resulted from saline irrigation water and a shallow water table. Actual yield decreased with the increase in soil salinity, the decrease in water table depth, and the presence of a gypsum-cemented horizon within the soil profile. The significant effect of the interaction between water table depth and soil salinity showed that the crop responded to the most severe stress rather than to combinations of the individual effects. Potential yield was assessed according to classes of water table depth, soil salinity and the occurrence of a gypsum-cemented horizon. The relationship between soil salinity and potential yield was calibrated according to two models. The limiting factors in order of decreasing importance were shallow water table, high soil salinity and occurrence of a gypsum-cemented horizon for 38.3%, 16.8% and 2.4% of the field plots, respectively; there was no limiting factor for 42.5% of the field plots. In certain sectors, actual yields remained far below potential yields and the additional effect of irrigation water salinity could thus be considered.

Mots-clés : phoenix dactylifera; rendement des cultures; engorgement du sol; salinité du sol; enquête; algérie

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