Pre-plant soil moisture survey in progress
Field personnel are now collecting data for the annual pre-plant soil moisture survey conducted by the High Plains Underground Water Conservation District No. 1.
Data collection should be completed in three to four weeks, weather permitting.
Moisture meters are used to gather soil moisture data at about 100 permanently-installed monitoring sites throughout the district’s 16-county service area.
Readings are taken at six-inch intervals throughout the five-foot root zone soil profile by lowering a probe into an aluminum access tube at the site. These data are later processed to calculate the amount of moisture in the soil (available moisture) and the amount of moisture the soil can hold for plant use through rainfall and/or irrigation (deficit moisture).
Maps are prepared showing the location of soil moisture sites within the district and the crop type, irrigation application method, and amount of soil moisture in the upper three feet and upper five feet of the soil at each site.
“This information gives producers an idea of soil moisture trends in their area and they can make pre-plant irrigation decisions based upon this information as well as their own on-farm soil moisture tests,” said Gerald Crenwelge, field data collection coordinator.
These maps will be published in The Cross Section, the water district’s free monthly newsletter.
Additional information about the pre-plant soil moisture survey is available by contacting Crenwelge at 806-762-0181 or visiting the HPWD website at http://www.hpwd.com/ag-and-urban-water-use/pre-plant-survey.
The High Plains Underground Water Conservation District was created in 1951 by local residents and the Texas Legislature to conserve, preserve, protect, and prevent waste of groundwater in its 16-county service area.