In addition to the large scale on farm rice studies, MSU research has utilized controlled small plot research to verify the use of AWD in rice. PhD. candidate Lee Atwill shares his AWD investigations.
Experiments were conducted at the Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville, MS during 2015 and 2016 toevaluate the yield and physiological response of rice to several alternate wetting and drying (AWD) irrigation treatments. Three rice cultivars, CL151, Rex, and XL745 (RiceTec) were evaluated in six different rice irrigation treatments. Irrigation treatments included: a continuous flood, allowing the flood to recede to the soil surface, 4” below the soil surface, 8” below the soil surface, 12” below the soil surface, and 16” below the soil surface. Water levels in each paddy were monitored utilizing a Pani pipe and irrigation events were triggered at each respective threshold. Rice grain yield was recorded at harvest. Data from this experiment in 2015 and 2016 suggest that allowing flood to subside to 4 inches below the soil surface does not result in yield loss compared to a continuous flooded system. Link to Complete Article