Spatial Variability and Lateral Location of Soil Moisture Monitoring Points on Cotton Mulched Drip Irrigation Field

  • Xiaoyun Lei
  • Fangsong Li
  • Shijun Zhou
  • Yan Li
  • Dachun Chen
  • Huanxian Liu
  • Yu Pan
  • Xiangmin Shen
Part of the IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology book series (IFIPAICT, volume 368)


This experiment was conducted from April to September in 2009 in Baotou-lake Farm of Korla city, Xinjiang region, China. Two experiment schemes were designed for analyzing the spatial variability and lateral orientation of monitoring points for soil moisture. In scheme 1, 44 monitoring points were positioned with sampling depth of 0~60cm. In scheme 2, 20 monitoring points were placed with sampling depth of 0~80cm. Samples were taken in the whole cotton growing period before and after irrigation in both schemes. Statistical analyses including Q-Q test, descriptive statistics, t-test and geo-statistical analysis were performed to the soil moisture data. The results indicate that the increase of soil moisture can enhance their spatial variability. In drip-irrigated cotton cultivation, spatial variability of soil moisture resulted from the combination of several random variables and the structural factors such as climate, topography, soil form. Semi-variogram models belong to spherical model and the range of spherical model for soil moisture is about 9.40m~35.35m. The accuracy of the fitted model decreases as the soil moisture content increases. The monitoring points should be placed at the range of 0~0.475m from the drip tape and it is not suitable to place them at a farther place. It can be concluded that it is best to position the monitoring points at outward cotton row in consideration of management and soil moisture monitoring. The outcome of this study can be used for the proper design and placement of monitoring points for soil moisture.


Cotton Mulched drip irrigation Soil moisture Spatial variability Monitoring point Geo-statistics 


  1. 1.
    Hillel, D.: Fundaments of Soil Physics. Academic Press, New York (1980)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Burgess, T.M., Webster, R.: Optimal interpolation and isarithmic and isarithmic mapping of soli properties. Soil Sci. 31, 315–341 (1980)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Nielsen, D.R., Biggar, J.W.: Monitoring soil water properties utilizing geostatistical techniques. ISRSS China 21, 211–223 (1985)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Bárdossy, A., Lehmann, W.: Spatial distribution of soil moisture in a small catchment. Part 1: geostatistical analysis. Hydrology 206, 1–15 (1998)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Anctil, F., Mathieu, R., Parent, L.-E., Viau, A.A., Sbih, M., Hessami, M.: Geostatistics of near-surface moisture in bare cultivated organic soils. Hydrology 260, 30–37 (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Wilson, D.J., Western, A.W., Grayson, R.B.: Spatial distribution of soil moisture over 6 and 30 cm depth, Mahurangi river catchment. Hydrology 276, 254–274 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Western, A.W.: Spatial correlation of soil moisture in small catchments and its relationship to dominant spatial hydrological processes. Hydrology 286, 113–134 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Veronese Jr., V., Carvalho, M.P., Dafonte, J., Freddi, O.S., Vidal Vazquez, E., Ingaramo, O.E.: Spatial variability of soil water content and mechanical resistance of BraZilian ferralsol. Soil & Tillage Research 85, 166–177 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Huang, J., Du, Z.-D., Zhu, X.-G., Liu, L., Wu, W.-H., Liu, B.: Spatial Variability Research of Soil Moisture. Water Saving Irrigation 10, 20–21, 25 (2010)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Bi, H., Li, X., Liu, X., Guo, M., Li, J.: A case study of spatial heterogeneity of soil moisture in the Loess Plateau, western China: A geostatistical approach. International Journal of Sediment Research 24(1), 63–73 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Brocca, L., Morbidelli, R., Melone, F., Moramarco, T.: Soil moisture spatial variability in experimental areas of central Italy. Hydrology 333, 356–373 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Famiglietti, J.S., Devereaux, J.A., Laymon, C.A., Tsegaye, T., Houser, P.R., Jackson, T.J., Graham, S.T., Rodell, M., van Oevelen, P.J.: Ground-based investigation of soil moisture variability within remote sensing footprints during the Southern Great Plains 1997 (SGP 1997) Hydrology Experiment (1997) Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Yao, F., Xu, Y., Lin, E., Yokozawa, M., Zhang, J.: Assessing the impacts of climate change on rice yields in the main rice areas of China. Climatic Change 80, 395–409 (2007), doi:10.1007/s10584-006-9122-6CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Lin, H., Wheeler, D., Bell, J., Wilding, L.: Assessment of soil spatial variability at multiple scales. Ecological Modelling 182, 271–290 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Wang, J., Fu, B.J., Qiu, Y., Chen, L.D., Wang, Z.: Geostatistical analysis of soil moisture variability on Da Nangou catchments of the loess plateau. China Environmental Geology 41(1), 113–116 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Cline, T.J., Molinas, A., Julien, P.Y.: An auto-CAD-based watershed information system for the Hydrologic Model HEC-1. Water Resources Bulletin 25(3), 641–652 (1989)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Cambardella, C.A., Moorman, T.B., Parkin, T.B., Karlen, D.L., Turco, R.F., Konopka, A.E.: Field scale variability of soil properties in Central Iowa soils. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J. 58, 1501–1511 (1994)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Feng, Q., Liu, Y., Masao, M.: Geostatistical analysis of soil moisture variability in grassland. Journal of Arid Environments 58, 357–372 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Taschetto, A.S., England, M.H.: An analysis of late twentieth century trends in Australian rainfall. International Journal of Climatology (2008),, doi:10.1002/joc.1736
  20. 20.
    De Silva, C.S., Weatherhead, E.K., Knox, J.W., Rodriguez-Diaz, J.A.: Predicting the impacts of climate change—A case study of paddy irrigation water requirements in Sri Lanka. Agricultural Water Management 93, 19–29 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Lin, H., Zhou, X.: Evidence of subsurface preferential flow using soil hydrologic monitoring in the Shale Hills catchment. European Journal of Soil Science 59, 34–49 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Petrone, R.M., Price, J.S., Carey, S.K., Waddington, J.M.: Statistical characterization of the spatial variability of soil moisture in a cutover peatland. Hydrol. Process 18, 41–52 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiaoyun Lei
    • 1
  • Fangsong Li
    • 2
  • Shijun Zhou
    • 3
  • Yan Li
    • 1
  • Dachun Chen
    • 1
  • Huanxian Liu
    • 4
  • Yu Pan
    • 2
  • Xiangmin Shen
    • 2
  1. 1.College of Civil and Hydraulic EngineeringXinjiang Agriculture UniversityUrumqiChina
  2. 2.Xinjiang Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower ResearchUrumqiChina
  3. 3.Suining Water Service BureauChina
  4. 4.College of Grass and Environmental ScienceXinjiang Agriculture UniversityUrumqiChina

Personalised recommendations