Water demands and biomass production of sorghum and maize plants in areas with insufficient precipitation in Central Europe

https://doi.org/10.17221/274/2018-PSECitation:Škeříková M., Brant V., Kroulík M., Pivec J., Zábranský P., Hofbauer M., Hakl J. (2018): Water demands and biomass production of sorghum and maize plants in areas with insufficient precipitation in Central Europe. Plant Soil Environ., 64: 367-378.
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Evapotranspiration and transpiration measurements represent a tool for the assessment of crop water demand. The aim of this study was to compare sorghum and maize with respect to its potential for forage production in areas with insufficient precipitation in Central Europe. The values of the actual evapotranspiration (ETa, Bowen ratio balance method), transpiration (sap flow method), leaf area index (LAI) and biomass production of sorghum and maize were measured continuously in years 2010–2012. Sorghum stand provided higher ETa in comparison with maize in dry year 2012. Maize produced consistently more above-ground biomass yield and lower LAI over all evaluated years than sorghum. The sorghum provided similar or higher water use efficiency (WUE) than maize during the period of intensive prolongation growth, however, the higher WUE did not result in higher biomass production.

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