Techniques of Water Saving in Rice Production in Malaysia
"More crops per drop" concept is a growing interest in rice cultivation. An experiment was carried out to determine the effect of reducing water on rice production and to investigate the temporal changes in chemical properties in soil solution. There were five treatments simulating different flooding depths and durations during the rice-growing period namely; W1 (continuous flooding at 5 cm); W2 (continuous flooding at 1 cm); W3 (continuous flooding at 5 cm in the first 3 weeks then 1 cm flooding); W4 (continuous flooding at 5 cm in the first 6 weeks then 1 cm flooding) and W5 (continuous flooding at 5 cm in first 9 weeks then 1 cm flooding) with 4 replications. Different water saving techniques did not any effect on rice yield and yield components.
Rice is the most important staple food in Asia, providing an average of 32%
of total calorie uptake. Approximately, 576 million tons per year
rice produced globally, 90-91% is produced and consumed in Asia.
The Malaysian scenario shows that the increase in rice production is not parallel
with the increase in the countrys population. In order to meet the demand,
rice is imported from neighboring countries, with the amount valued at about
RM 501 million per year as reported by Asian Food Security Information System.
Increased productivity with optimum input should be the direction forward. One
of the major inputs for rice production is water. About 75% of the global rice
volume produced is in the irrigated lowlands. The increase in
total irrigated crop area has increased the demand for water. In Asia, irrigated
rice account for about 50% of the total amount of water diverted for irrigation,
which in itself accounts for 80% of the amount of fresh water diverted.
Per capita availability of water resources has declined by 40-60% in many Asian
countries between 1955 and 1990. In fact, in Malaysia, water supply
coverage grew rapidly between 1990 and 1995 (3.74% per annum) that Malaysia
achieved its goal of providing 89% of its population with safe drinking water
by 1995. The overall water demand is growing at the rate of 4% annually and
projected to be about 20 billion m3 by 2020 and the annual domestic
and industrial water demand will grow to 5.8 billion m3 and the irrigation
water demand to about 13.2 billion m3 in 2020. The
current study attempts to look into the potential of producing rice under low
water input. In consideration with this current issue, this study attempted
to find the effect of different flooding regimes on rice yield.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
An experiment was carried out in the field at Universiti Putra Malaysia to
evaluate the effect of low water input for rice production. The experiment was
laid out in a Completely Randomized Design (CRD) consisting of 5 different flooding
levels with 4 replications. The 90 cm cylindrical culvert with closed bottom
was used in this experiment and soils were filled at 40 cm depth from 20 cm
below the brim to facilitate the water application. There were made two holes
controlling by regulators at 1 cm and 5 cm above from the soil level to maintain
of water levels according to the treatment. Fertilizers were applied Urea 110
kg ha-1 as N with 2 splits 2/3 as basal + 1/3 at active tillering,
P2O5 (60 kg ha-1) as Triple Super Phosphate
(TSP) and K2O (65 kg ha-1) as Muriate of Potash (MOP).
Compound fertilizer (N: P: K= 12:12:17) was applied twice at 50 and 71 days
after planting at the rate of 300 and 200 kg ha-1, respectively.
At maturity, the number of tiller and panicle per plot were recorded. The difference
in the grain and straw yield was recorded. The panicle and straw were oven-dried
at 60-70oC to constant weight and straw weight was recorded. The
panicles were threshed and weight. The filled grain was separated from unfilled
grain using salt solution using1.06 specific gravity.
|| Yield and yield components of rice plant grown under different
|Means with the same letter are not significantly different
in column at p≤0.05 by DMRT
The filled grain was washed, oven-dried, weighed and counted. The second hill
in the middle row was collected to count filled grain per panicle, unfilled
grain per panicle and weight of 1000 seeds was determined. The data was analyzed
for analysis of variance (ANOVA). The means were compared using Duncans
Multiple Range Test (DMRT) using the Statistical Analysis System software version
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
There were no significant difference of tiller numbers, panicle numbers, yield t/ha, straw yield t/ha, unfilled grain/panicle, filled grain/panicle and 1000 seeds weight (g) respect to different water saving irrigation systems (Table 1). The tiller and panicle number was in the range of 674 to 695 and 636 to 665, respectively. The panicle number had a relation with the tiller number and the panicle number is higher in treatments, which were showed higher tiller number. The filled grains per panicle were in the range of 89 to 101, although Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institution were reported 88 grain per panicle. Increased the filled grain might be effect of the contribution of carbohydrate from current photosynthesis might be more and efficiently translocated into grain and thus increased the grain yield. The number of unfilled grain per panicle was in the range of 20 to 26. In this study, the 1000s seed weight was 27.13 and 27.70 g as similar to MADRI was 27.11 g. The straw weight was found to be ranged between 13.15 to 14.46 t ha-1. Yield was in the range of 12.39 to 11.87 t ha-1. The overall grain (14% moisture content) was around 12 t ha-1; however, MARDI was estimated 10.70 t ha-1 in same rice variety MR219 at MARDI rice research station Tanjang Karang, Selangor. MARDI also reported that to achieve 10 t ha-1 yield must be achieved 500 panicles per square meter. In this research, the panicle number was estimated more than 600 per square meter; therefore, the yield was increased up to a level of 12 t ha-1.
This study clearly shows that it is highly possible to produce rice under low
water saving technique, which may capable of saving water between at least 25-30%.
Therefore, the surplus water could use for municipal and industrial purposes
for getting 100% self sufficient of country demand.
Project grants number 01-02-04-0078 (2002-2004) from the Ministry of Science and Technology, Malaysia, supported this study.
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