Date of Award

Summer 8-27-2018

Thesis Access

WSU Access Only (1 year) Honors Thesis

Degree Name

B.S.

Department

Geology

Faculty Advisor

Dr. Shirley Papuga

Abstract

It becomes increasingly more evident that to create a sustainable future, we must start better rationing our resources now. One such resource is our access to fresh water. This is an incredibly important commodity for all, but especially so in areas such as the southwest united states who face continuous droughts and yet still maintain agriculture that require large quantities of water to achieve maximum growth. In this paper, I conducted an in-depth review of literature on one of the southwest recently more important cash crops: pecans. From looking at the history, growth and farming techniques currently in place for pecans I learned that the recommended amount of water is between 55-60 in, or 1397-1524 mm per acre a year. With this basis, I looked at eight different studies for any variations of water use; this showed cases where orchards were being over-watered and that the percent of water evapotranspirated from pecans in the southwest is roughly 71%. There appears to be no change in pecan water use in differing elevations, suggesting that alternate altitudes will not lead to better or worse water use. None of the studies attempted irrigating at different times, however, two studies found that pecan could withstand early season stress caused by limiting irrigation and maintain good yield so long as it was given enough water in the nut filling stage. Overall, more research should be done on achieving maximum crop production with the least amount of water to conserve water in communities.

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