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Evaluation of improved tea (Camellia sinensis L.) genotypes to differential drip-irrigation levels in Tanzania

Author Affiliations

  • 1Tea Research Institute of Tanzania (TRIT), P.O. Box 2177, Dar-Es-Salaam, Tanzania
  • 2Sokoine University of Agriculture, Department of Crop Science and Horticulture, P.O. Box 3005 Morogoro, Tanzania
  • 3Sokoine University of Agriculture, Department of Crop Science and Horticulture, P.O. Box 3005 Morogoro, Tanzania
  • 4Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization-Tea Research Institute-Kericho, Kenya

Res. J. Agriculture & Forestry Sci., Volume 6, Issue (6), Pages 1-13, June,8 (2018)

Abstract

A study was carried out to establish optimal drip irrigation level for yield, shoot density and water use efficiency (WUE) on tea (Camellia sinensis L.) crop. Thirty-one improved tea genotypes and five irrigation treatments (I0 - I4 =100%) were investigated for 2-seasons at Ngwazi Tea Research Station, Tanzania. A Randomized Complete Block Design was adopted with irrigations arranged in split-plot in 3 replications. Genotypes and irrigations were assigned as main- and sub-plots respectively. Irrigation was scheduled based on a simple soil water balance equation. Evapotranspiration was calibrated using daily evaporation B-Pan data. Under I4 =100%, TRFK 303/577 (19) had significantly higher yield (2037kgmtha-1). Under I1 = 25%, TRFK 303/259 (18) recorded highest shoot density (207shoots m-2). Under I0; TRIT 201/43 (4) and TRFK 303/259 (18) produced significantly higher yields of 1136 and 1138kgmtha-1 respectively. Significantly higher shoot density (159shoots m-2) and yield (1570kgmtha-1) were registered during 2014/15 and 2015/16 respectively. Yield and shoot density had significant positive correlation r = 0.99***. Yield r = 0.73*** and shoot density r = 0.70*** significantly positively correlated with WUE. Yield-drip irrigation relationship described significant quadratic function with average R2 = 0.54* in 2014/15 and linear function with higher and significant R2 = 0.98*** in 2015/16. Yield-WUE relationship explained linear function with very weak R2 = 0.04in 2014/15, in 2015/16 the relationship was linear with higher significant R2 = 0.72***. Compared to I4 =100%, irrigating tea at I1= 25% in 2014/15 improved yield by 1.4% and saved water by 74.6%. Irrigating tea at I1= 25% during 2015/6 improved tea yield by 37.9% and saved water by 68.3%.

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