Journal of Oil Palm Research Vol. 33 (2) June 2021, p. 278-288



Received: 23 December 2019   Accepted: 7 September 2020   Published Online: 27 October 2020

The right decision is needed before the irrigation project starts because it is risky, costly and required a sitespecific approach. The study aims to estimate oil palm irrigation water demand by using FAO-CROPWAT model. Study was conducted in Chuping Region, Northern Peninsular of Malaysia. Four points were selected to represent North, East, West and South for soil sampling. The samples were sent to a laboratory to measure the water content after pressure applied at 0, 1, 10, 33 and 1500 kPa. Total available water holding capacity was found at 105-227 mm for 100 cm soil depth and the lowest value was selected to be used in FAO-CROPWAT model, developed by Land and Water Development Division of Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO). Prior to that, history of 14 years of monthly meteorological data were collected and serve as climatic data for potential evapotranspiration calculation. Based on the simulation, crop evapotranspiration (ETc) and irrigation requirement (IR) was 1175 and 255.2 mm yr–1 respectively. Total net irrigation was concluded at 132 mm yr–1 with the assumption of 80% irrigation efficiency and 5.0 mm of irrigation input. Through this study, FAO-CROPWAT found to be a suitable approach to estimate crop water requirement (CWR) for oil palm and simulate irrigation scheduling for the entire year. It can help to strategise the management plan prior to any irrigation project design and increase potential for good economic return.



* FGV R&D Sdn Bhd, PPP Tun Razak,
27000 Jerantut, Pahang, Malaysia.

** FGV R&D Sdn Bhd,
Level 9 West, Wisma FGV Jalan Raja Laut,
50350 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

‡ Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering,
Universiti Putra Malaysia,
43400 UPM Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia.

‡‡ Smart Farming Technology Research Center,
Level 6, Tower Block, Faculty of Engineering,
Universiti Putra Malaysia,
43400 UPM Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia.

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