Effects of Irrigation Frequency and Nitrogen Fertilizer Application on Yield and Water Use Efficiency of Lowland Rice (Oryza sativa L.) in Northeastern Nigeria

Ibraheem Alhassan, Abdullahi Muhammad Saddiq, Abubakar Ibrahim, Yunusa Mustapha


Irrigation water and nitrogen fertilizer are the two most important factors limiting the yield of lowland rice plant in most rice producing soils of northeastern Nigeria. In view of this an experiment was conducted at the Lake Geriyo irrigation scheme farms in Yola Adamawa State, Nigeria to study the effects of irrigation intervals and nitrogen fertilizer rates on lowland rice (Faro 44). The experiment was laid out in split plot design, where three irrigation frequencies (4, 8 and 12 days irrigation intervals) were used as main plot factors while nitrogen fertilizer rates (0, 50, 100 and 150kg N ha-1) as sub plot factors. Results obtained indicated that irrigation interval and nitrogen levels influenced grain yield, straw yield and harvest index of rice significantly (P ≤ 0.05) which showed increasing trend with increase in nitrogen levels at 4 days irrigation interval. Maximum grain yield (5725.67 kg ha-1), straw yield (6465.26 kg ha-1) and harvest index (47.15%) were achieved with 4 days irrigation interval and 150 kg N ha-1. Irrigation water use efficiency (IWUE) was higher at 8 days irrigation interval with 100 and 150kg N ha-1 thus saving about 48% water compared to 4 days irrigation interval which saved only 13%. It is concluded that increasing the irrigation interval from 4 to 8 days on the clay loam soils of northeastern Nigeria can result in substantial irrigation water savings so that larger areas of rice would be cultivated. Therefore 8 days irrigation interval and 100kg N ha-1 is recommended for rice farmers in the study area for improve water use efficiency.

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