University of California

Microsprinklers wet larger soil volume; boost almond yield, tree growth


Larry J. Schwankl
John P. Edstrom
Jan W. Hopmans
Luis Andreu
Kouman S. Koumanov

Authors Affiliations

L. Schwankl is UCCE Irrigation Specialist Department of Land, Air, and Water Resources, Hydrologic Sciences, UC Davis; J. Edstrom is Pomology Farm Advisor, UCCE Colusa County; J. Hopmans is Professor, Department of Land, Air, and Water Resources, Hydrologic Sciences, UC Davis; L. Andreu is Water Management Researcher located at the University of Seville, Spain; K.S. Koumanov is Water Management Researcher at the Fruit Growing Institute, Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

Publication Information

Hilgardia 53(2):39-43. DOI:10.3733/ca.v053n02p39. March 1999.

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In the Arbuckle area of the Sacramento Valley, a 22-acre orchard was planted in 1990 with four almond varieties (‘Nonpareil’, ‘Butte’, ‘Carmel’ and ‘Monterey’). The orchard was irrigated with three types of microirrigation — surface drip, subsurface drip and microsprinklers. The orchard soils are 3 to 4 feet of gravelly, loamy sand overlaying a restricting clay layer. The coarse-textured soil with its low water-holding capacity allows little lateral movement of water from the microirrigation emission device. Under these soil conditions, microsprinkler-irrigated trees produced larger almond yields and showed greater tree growth. In addition, irrigation system evaluations show that all three microirrigation systems provide excellent irrigation uniformity levels after 8 years of operation with only routine maintenance.


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Koumanov KS, Hopmans JW, Schwankl LJ, et al. Application efficiency of microsprinkler irrigation of almond trees. Agric Water Management. 1997. 34:247-63. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-3774(97)00030-9

Schwankl LJ, Edstrom JP, Hopmans JW. Performance of microirrigation systems in almonds. Proceedings of 7th International Conference on Water and Irrigation 1996. Tel Aviv, Israel:

University of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Using Reference Evapotranspiration (Eto) and Crop Coefficients to Estimate Crop Evapotranspiration (Etc) for Trees and Vines. Leaflet 21428 1989.

Schwankl L, Edstrom J, Hopmans J, Andreu L, Koumanov K. 1999. Microsprinklers wet larger soil volume; boost almond yield, tree growth. Hilgardia 53(2):39-43. DOI:10.3733/ca.v053n02p39
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