Optimizing irrigation requirements for almond trees grown in the South Sinai Governorate

A. A Farag, M. A. A Abdrabbo, M. S Abourayya, N. E Kassim


South Sinai, Egypt is considered one of the most severe governorates for water scarcity. The current work aims to optimize irrigation requirements for almond trees (Prunus dulcis, syn. Prunus amygdalus, var. nonpareil) in the El-Tor area, South Sinai. Climate data of the El-Tor area was collected from 2010 to 2014 to calculate evapotranspiration. Two evapotranspiration equations were used in this work: Penman-Monteith (complex radiation equation) and Blaney-Criddle (simple temperature equation). Regression analysis was done between the two equations to determine their agreement and calculate a correction factor in order to make the Blaney-Criddle equation more accurate under South Sinai conditions (modified Blaney-Criddle). Irrigation requirements for one- to five-year-old almond trees in South Sinai were also calculated for the last five years. This study helps the almond farmers estimate the irrigation requirements by using maximum and minimum temperature (Blaney-Criddle) instead of using many climatic parameters (Penman-Monteith). The R2 regression analysis between the two tested equations was 0.95, which means that the suggested correction factor can be used with great confidence. Although there were significant differences between ETo values calculated using Penman-Monteith and Blaney-Criddle, there were no significant differences between the modified Blaney-Criddle (with the correction factor) and Penman-Monteith. This study recommends the use of the modified Blaney-Criddle equation for almond farmers who don’t have access to the extensive climate data needed for Penman-Monteith, such as wind speed, relative humidity, sunshine hours and solar radiation. The output of this study is the accurate estimation of monthly irrigation requirements for almonds grown in South Sinai.

Key words: Evapotranspiration, irrigation schedule, air temperature, evapotranspiration, Penman-Monteith, Blaney-Criddle

Data of the article

First received : 31 March 2017 | Last revision received : 17 September 2017
Accepted : 27 September 2017 | Published online : 17 October 2017
URN: nbn:de:hebis: 34-2017072553082

Full Text:



Abdrabbo, M. A., Farag, A. A. & El-Desokey, W. M. S. (2015). Implementing of RCPs Scenarios for the Prediction of Evapotranspiration in Egypt. International Journal of Plant & Soil Science, 6(1), 50-63.

Allen, R.G., Periera, L.S., Raes, D. & Smith, M. (1998). Crop evapotranspiration: guideline for computing crop water requirement (FAO Irrigation and Drainage Paper No. 56). Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization.

Allen, R. G., Walter, I. A., Elliott, R. L., Howell, T. A., Itenfisu, D., Jensen M. E. & Snyder, R.L. (2005). The ASCE Standardized Reference Evapotranspiration Equation. Reston, VA: American Society of Civil Engineers. Reston, Virginia.

Blaney, H. F., Hanson, E. G., & Litz, G. M. (1950). Consumptive water use and irrigation water requirements of crops in New Mexico. U. S. Department of Agriculture, Soil Conservation Service.

Droogers, P. & Allen, R. G. (2002). Estimating reference evapotranspiration under inaccurate data conditions. Irrigation and Drainage Systems, 16(1), 33–45.

El-Afandi, G. & Abdrabbo, M. A. A. (2015). Evaluation of reference evapotranspiration equations under current climate conditions of Egypt. Turkish Journal of Agriculture - Food Science and Technology, 3(10), 819-825.

Farag A. A. , Abdrabbo, M. A. A. & Ahmed, M. S. M. (2014). GIS tool for distribution reference evapotranspiration under climate change in Egypt. International Journal of Plant & Soil Science, 3(6), 575- 588.

Farnum, R. L. (2014). Water for food: Feeding what? - A comparative analysis of Egyptian and Israeli national water policies toward water in agricultural production. Future of Food: Journal on Food, Agriculture and Society, 2(1), 140-145.

Food and Agriculture Organization. (1983). Guidelines: Land evaluation of rain-fed agriculture. (Soil Bulletin 52). Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization.

Garcial, M., Raes, D., Allen, R. G. & Herbas, C. (2006). Dynamics of reference evapotranspiration in the Bolivian highlands (Altiplano). Agriculture and Forest Meteorology, 125(1-2), 67-82.

Gardner, F. P., Pearce, R. B. & Mitchell, R. L. (1985). Physiology of Crop Plants. Ames, OH: Iowa State University Press.

Goldhamer, D. A. & Fereres, E. (2004). Irrigation scheduling of almond trees with trunk diameter sensors. Irrigation Science, 23(1), 11-19.

Goldhamer D. A., Viveros, M. & Salinas, M. (2006). Regulated deficit irrigation in almonds: Effects of variations in applied water and stress timing on yield and yield components. Irrigation Science, 24(2), 101–114.

Howell, T. A. (2001). Enhancing water use efficiency in irrigated agriculture. Agronomy journal, 93(2), 281-289.

Hutmacher, R. B., Nightingale, H. I., Rolston., D. E., Biggar, J. W., Dale, F., Vails, S. S. & Peters, D. (1994). Growth and yield responses of almond (Prunusamygdalus) to trickle irrigation. Irrigation Science, 14(3), 117 – 126.

Katerji, N. & Rana, G. (2011). Crop reference evapotranspiration: A discussion of the concept, analysis of the process and validation. Water Resources Management, 25(6),1581- 1600.

Omran , A. Dietrichb, S. , Abouelmagdc , A., Michael, M.2016. New ArcGIS tools developed for stream network extraction and basin delineations using Python and java script. Computers & Geosciences 94: 140–149

Statistical Analysis System. (2000). SAS user’s guide: Statistics. Cary, NC: SAS Institute Inc.

Temesgen, B., Eching, S., Davifoof, B. & Frame, K. (2005). Comparison of some reference evapotranspiration equations for California. Journal of Irrigation and Drainage Engineering, 131(1), 73-84.

Xu, C. Y. & Singh, V. P. (2001). Evaluation and generalization of temperature-based methods for calculating evaporation. Hydrological Processes, 15(2), 305–319.

Xu, C. Y., & Singh, V. P. (2002). Cross comparison of empirical equations for calculating potential evapotranspiration with data from Switzerland. Water Resources Management, 16, 197-219.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Comments on this article

View all comments




 Google Scholar H5 index 5 


The contributions of the peer reviewers for the journal are acknowledged in the 


Sponsoring Organisations

Logo Agrarekologie Uni Kassel