DOI: 10.1002/ird.2879 ISSN:

Strategies for water productivity enhancement in maize—A comprehensive review

Lala Iswari Prasad Ray, Kona Sai Jyothi, Aditya Kumar Singh, Vijay Bharti, Pramod Kumar Pandey
  • Soil Science
  • Agronomy and Crop Science


Maize (Zea mays L.) is the third most important cereal crop produced globally after wheat and rice and provides the basic raw materials for starch, oil, protein, alcoholic beverages, food sweeteners and fuel. It is grown on an area of 201.98 Mha worldwide, with an average productivity of 5.75 t ha−1. Maize is mostly grown during the rainy season, but it performs better during the winter season with irrigation and resource conservation techniques. The average productivity of maize during the rainy and winter seasons is 4.3 and 6.2 t ha−1, respectively. The total production is as low as 2.7 Mt in Nepal to 362.78 Mt in the USA. Maize performs better under the furrow and drip irrigation methods, and the range of water requirements is between 425–789 and 351–685 mm, respectively. Plastic and straw mulching has enhanced irrigation water use efficiency up to 34.0–47.2 and 15.3–24.1 kg ha−1 mm−1, respectively. The crop coefficients, Kc values, for maize crops ranges between 0.2 and 1.2. Of the different methods of irrigation, the drip irrigation method enhances the maize yield by 28% and plays a great role in corn yield. This paper discusses various strategies for enhancing global maize yield.

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