Downwind evolution of transpiration by two irrigated crops under conditions of local advection

K. J. McAneney*, Y. Brunet, B. Itier

*Corresponding author for this work

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20 Citations (Scopus)


Previous measurements of water loss from small-dish evaporimeters mounted at the height of irrigated crops grown under conditions of extreme local advection in the Sudan are reexamined. From these evaporimeter measurements, it is possible to calculate fractional changes in the saturation deficit. Relationships between canopy conductance and saturation deficit are briefly reviewed and introduced into the Penman-Monteith equation to calculate transpiration rates as a function of distance downwind of the boundary between the upwind desert and the irrigated crop. In contradiction to most theoretical predictions, these new calculations show rates of transpiration to undergo only modest changes with increasing fetch. This occurs because of the feedback interaction between saturation deficit and stomatal conductance. This result is in good accord with a recent study suggesting that a dry-moist boundary transition may be best modelled as a simple step change in surface fluxes and further that the advective enhancement of evaporation may have been overestimated by many advection models. Larger effects are expected on dry matter yields because of the direct influence of saturation deficit on the yield-transpiration ratio.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)375-388
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Hydrology
Issue number1-4
Publication statusPublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes


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