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International Journal of Agronomy
Volume 2017, Article ID 2594569, 7 pages
Research Article

Assessment of a New Approach for Systematic Subsurface Drip Irrigation Management

1Agence de Promotion des Investissements Agricoles, 6000 Gabès, Tunisia
2Laboratory of Hydraulic, High School of Engineers of Rural Equipment, Medjez el Bab, Tunisia
3National Research Institute of Rural Engineering, Water and Forests (INRGREF), Rue Hédi EL Karray El Menzah IV, BP 10, 2080 Ariana, Tunisia
4Institut des Régions Arides, 6000 Gabès, Tunisia

Correspondence should be addressed to Ahmed Saidi; moc.liamg@44demhaidias

Received 5 December 2016; Accepted 26 January 2017; Published 20 February 2017

Academic Editor: Manuel Tejada

Copyright © 2017 Hédi Ben Ali et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper aimed to assess the reliability of a new approach that provides systematic irrigation management based on fixed water suction in the vadose zone. Trials were carried out in the experimental farm of IRA Gabès on subsurface drip irrigated (SDI) tomato plot. The SDI system was designed so that the soil water content is to be maintained within prescribed interval ascertaining the best plant growth. Irrigation management was systematically monitored by water suction evolution in the vadose zone. Recorded results showed that all-over irrigation season lateral pressure head ranged within 93.3 ± 20.0; 119.95 ± 53.35 and 106.6 ± 40.0 mb, respectively, at the upstream, middle, and downstream. The correspondent lateral pressure head distribution uniformity ranged within 97.1% and 99.6%. Soil water content varied within 0.2175 ± 0.0165; 0.206 ± 0.0195 and 0.284 ± 0.100 beneath the inlet, the behalf, and the lateral end tip. The correspondent soil water distribution uniformity was higher than 80.7% all-over irrigation season. Based on the recorded results, the proposed approach could be a helpful tool for accurate SDI systems design and best water supplies management. Nevertheless, further trials are needed to assess the approach reliability in different cropping conditions.