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Water Requirements and Growth of Irrigated Hybrid Poplar in a Semi-Arid Environment in Eastern Oregon

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Potential growth of poplar (Populus deltoides P. nigra.) is highly dependent on the amount of applied irrigation and soil moisture. Hybrid poplar (cultivar OP-367) was planted at 222 trees/ac in April 1997 at the Oregon State University Malheur Experiment Station near Ontario, OR. Six irrigation treatments included a combination of soil water potentials as thresholds for initiating irrigation and varying water application rates. Water was applied via micro-sprinklers installed along the tree rows. Results indicated that for optimum poplar growth, soil water potential at an 8 in. depth should average above -20 kPa (kPa = cbar) during the growing season. This was achieved by irrigating when the soil water potential reached -25 kPa and applying 21 ac-in./ac of irrigation water during the first year, 35 ac-in./ac during the second year, and 44 ac-in./ac during the third year. By the end of the third year, trees receiving optimum irrigation averaged 26 ft tall and produced 256 ft3 of wood/ac. West. J. Appl. For. 17(1):46–53.

Keywords: Hybrid poplar; diameter; environmental management; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; granular matrix sensor; height; irrigation; natural resource management; natural resources; soil water potential; volume growth; water use

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: Malheur Experiment Station, Oregon State University, Ontario, OR, 97914

Publication date: January 1, 2002

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  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Western Journal of Applied Forestry covers the western United States, including Alaska, and western Canada; WJAF will also consider manuscripts reporting research in northern Mexico that has potential application in the southwestern United States.
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