Controlled-Drainage Supplements Subirrigation in Humid Regions

by James L. Fouss, USDA-ARS, Baton Rouge, LA, USA,
Cade E. Carter, USDA-ARS, Baton Rouge, LA, USA,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Irrigation Systems for the 21st Century

Abstract: A computer simulation was conducted using climate and soil conditions of the humid southern U. S. to demonstrate optional operating methods for dual controlled-subdrainage/subirrigation systems which will improve control of water table depth during the crop growing season. The water management simulation program DRAINMOD was modified and used in the project. Subsurface drainage control was simulated by a conceptualized overflow outlet weir. Subirrigation was simulated by controlling the water level at the drain outlet via pumping from an external water source. One control option for drainage involved lowering the weir to drain depth on any day that the water table depth was less than 20cm from the soil surface. An option for subirrigation control used rainfall probability data from daily weather forecasts to aid in deciding when pumping of water for subirrigation should be delayed because of a high probability of receiving rainfall. Application of the model and results are discussed.

Subject Headings: Irrigation | Soil water | Humidity | Water table | Project management | Subsurface drainage

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