Flooded irrigation is usually adopted for rice growing in temperate areas. The efficiency of this method is generally very low and water consumption is comprised on average between 13 and 20.000 m3 ha-1, with maximum values reaching over 50.000 m3 ha-1. In areas with low water availability, rice growing can be carried out adopting alternative irrigation methods such as sprinkler irrigation and weekly soil saturation. Many cultivars showed high productivity and high yield in industrial processing in response to this technique. Main advantages with sprinkler irrigation are: reduction of seasonal water volume of about 40-50 %; lower environmental impact due to easier weed control and total algae absence; possibility of fitting the crop in open rotations; lower total costs as soil levelling and specific machines are not required; possibility to grow the crop even in clay loam to sandy soil; lower costs for certified seed production. Whereas with the soil saturation technique with turned water distribution: reduction of seasonal water volume ranges about 20-30 %; lower environmental impact due to avoidance of algaecide use and to reduced employment of weed killer.
INNOVATIVE AGRONOMIC TECHNIQUES FOR RICE CULTIVATION / Spanu, Antonino; Murtas, A.; Ledda, Luigi; Ballone, F.. - (2004), pp. 207-216. (Intervento presentato al convegno CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR SUSTAINABLE RICE-BASED PRODUCTION SYSTEMS).