Development and Application of Sensor Controlled Automatic Irrigation System for the Production of Camellia oleifera

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Hunan Forestry Science & Technology







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An automated irrigation system with dielectric soil moisture sensor is described. This system consists of CR1000 datalogger,AM16/32 multiplexer,SDM-CD16 AC controller( relay driver),and dielectric soil moisture sensor. It can efficiently irrigate plants to a desired level and supply those plants with just the amount of water required for normal plant growth, regardless of changes in plant size and environmental conditions. It can reduce wastage of irrigation water due to excess application, subsequently reduce leaching and run-off of fertilizer and/or pesticide, and help growers to cope with ever-increasing regulations of water-use. This system has become an important irrigation controller in greenhouse management and nursery production. It may have applications in stress physiology since it allows precision control over the rate at which drought stress is imposed on plants. Two-year-old Camellia oleifera( tea oil) plants were grown for 161 days in a greenhouse at different substrate volumetric water contents( VWC) maintained using the EC-5 sensor controlled irrigation system. This system could effectively maintain VWCs above desired set points. Camellia oleifera ‘Winter Snowman' was more tolerant to the drought than Camellia oleifera ‘Lushan Snow'. The optimal VWC for Camellia oleifera growth was about 33. 9% . During the experimental period, Camellia oleifera plants grown at the VWC of 33. 9% consumed an average of 20. 7 L water, which was 28% less than that at the VWC of 45. 2% .

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