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Evaluating the Response of Rainfed-Chickpea to Population Density in Iran, Using Simulation

Authors: Manoochehr Gholipoor


The response of growth and yield of rainfed-chickpea to population density should be evaluated based on long-term experiments to include the climate variability. This is achievable just by simulation. In this simulation study, this evaluation was done by running the CYRUS model for long-term daily weather data of five locations in Iran. The tested population densities were 7 to 59 (with interval of 2) stands per square meter. Various functions, including quadratic, segmented, beta, broken linear, and dent-like functions, were tested. Considering root mean square of deviations and linear regression statistics [intercept (a), slope (b), and correlation coefficient (r)] for predicted versus observed variables, the quadratic and broken linear functions appeared to be appropriate for describing the changes in biomass and grain yield, and in harvest index, respectively. Results indicated that in all locations, grain yield tends to show increasing trend with crowding the population, but subsequently decreases. This was also true for biomass in five locations. The harvest index appeared to have plateau state across low population densities, but decreasing trend with more increasing density. The turning point (optimum population density) for grain yield was 30.68 stands per square meter in Isfahan, 30.54 in Shiraz, 31.47 in Kermanshah, 34.85 in Tabriz, and 32.00 in Mashhad. The optimum population density for biomass ranged from 24.6 (in Tabriz) to 35.3 stands per square meter (Mashhad). For harvest index it varied between 35.87 and 40.12 stands per square meter.

Keywords: Rainfed-chickpea, biomass, harvest index, grain yield, simulation.

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