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9386. Harris, F.S. and A.F. Bracken. 1917. Soil moisture studies under irrigation.. Utah Agr. Expt. Sta. Bulletin No. 159, Logan, UT..
Summary 1. This bulletin contains results of several thousand moisture determinations of cropped and uncropped soil during a number of years under irrigation. 2. Important literature bearing on the subject is reviewed. 3. A great similarity was found in the content and distribution of moisture in soil producing potaoes and sugar beets. 4. The efficiency of water decreased with the amount applied. On beets and potatoes, 1 inch weekly showed a higher increase in moisture to a depth of 10 feet in proportion to the amount applied than either 2.5, 5, or 7.5 inches weekly. It also gave a higher yield of the crops. 5. The initial per cent of moisture in the soil affected the distribution of the water applied by irrigation. 6. Furrow irrigation was more effective in conserving moisture than an earth mulch. 7. The lateral movement of moisture in the soil after an irrigation was slow, particularly in the upper feet. 8. A straw mulch was more effective in conserving moisture than an earth mulch. 9. On soil to which irrigation water was applied, cultivaton was more effective in conserving moisture than pulling the weeds, but where the soil was not irrigated, the soil retained as much water where the weeds were pulled as where the land was cultivated. 10. The crop was able to reduce the moisture to a depth of 10 feet. 11. The difference in the moisture of the cropped and the uncropped soil was decreased with an increase in the amount of irrigation. 12. Manure had very litte effect on the distribution of moisture in the soil. 13. The application of more irrigation water than is actually needed by the crop is a wasteful practice. 14. The farmer should study the moisture requirement of his soil and then try so supply those requirements as efficiently as possible.