, Volume 31, Issue 4, pp 651-659

Calibration and validation of SALTMED model under dry and wet year conditions using chickpea field data from Southern Portugal

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Abstract

The SALTMED model is one of the few available generic models that can be used to simulate crop growth with an integrated approach that accounts for water, crop, soil, and field management. It is a physically based model using the well-known water and solute transport, evapotranspiration, and water uptake equations. In this paper, the model simulated chickpea growth under different irrigation regimes and a Mediterranean climate. Five different chickpea varieties were studied under irrigation regimes ranging from rainfed to 100 % crop water requirements, in a dry and a wet year. The calibration of the model using one of the chickpea varieties was sufficient for simulating the other varieties, not requiring a specific calibration for each individual chickpea variety. The results of calibration and validation of the SALTMED model showed that the model can simulate very accurately soil moisture content, grain yield, and total dry biomass of different chickpea varieties, in both wet and dry years. This new version of the SALTMED model (v. 3.02.09) has more features and possibilities than the previous versions, providing academics and professionals with a very good tool to manage water, soil, and crops.

Communicated by A. Kassam.