, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 61-69

Diurnal patterns of canopy photosynthesis, evapotranspiration and water use efficiency in chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) under field conditions

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Diurnal changes in net photosynthetic rate (PN), evapotranspiration rate (ET) and water use efficiency (WUE=PN/ET) of field grown chickpea (Cicer arietinum) L. cv. H-355 were studied from the vegetative phase through maturirty at Haryana Agricultural University Farm, Hissar, India. The maximum photosynthetic rate (PN max) increased from the initial vegetative phase to pod formation and declined at a rapid rate from pod filling to maturity. The response of PN to photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) (400–700 nm) was temperature-dependent during the day, i.e. on cool days the PN rates were lower for certain quanta of PPFD during the first half than during the second half of day, and vice versa on warm days. ET was affected both by crop cover and evaporative demand up to flowering, but thereafter it was independent of crop cover and followed the course of evaporative demand. ET was related to air temperature during the day while PN was related to PPFD. There was a lag of two to three hours between PNmax (around noon) and ETmax (around 2 p.m.). WUE increased from the vegetative stage through flowering but decreased thereafter to maturity.