Whole-tree Water Relations and Irrigation Scheduling for Mango

Ping Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Water status in trees is commonly studied by measuring leaf water potential with a pressure
bomb, but due to mango’s excessive latex exudation, leaf water potential measurements
cannot be reliably measured this way. We have measured xylem sap flow in the tree trunk,
microvariation of branch diameter (microdendro-metry), and leaf gas exchange to study
mango water relations. The main Australian mango cultivar ‘Kensington Pride’ is very
sensitive to air dryness, more so than most Florida cultivars. Both sap flow (tree water use)
and twig/branch shrinkage have been shown to be good plant-based indicators of plant
water status and been successfully used to control irrigation. However, at the present time,
both techniques are far from being practical or economical enough to be used by growers
for their irrigation scheduling. A low cost, farmer friendly tool for irrigators, ‘FullStop’ wetting
front detectors, was developed by CSIRO in Australia. ‘FullStop’ is a simple device buried in
the ground in the rooting zone, which will tell the irrigators when to switch off irrigation. This
system has great potential as an aid to irrigation decision making.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-122
Number of pages8
JournalActa Horticulturae
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


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