Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment

Vol 12, Issue 1,2014
Online ISSN: 1459-0263
Print ISSN: 1459-0255

Organic carrot-lettuce intercropping using mulch and different irrigation levels


Daniela Pinto Gomes 1, Daniel Fonseca de Carvalho 2, Wilk Sampaio de Almeida 3, Leonardo Oliveira Medici 4*, José Guiherme Marinho Guerra 5

Recieved Date: 2013-11-13, Accepted Date: 2014-01-26


Two field assays were conducted in Seropédica, RJ, Brazil, to evaluate the yield of carrot and lettuce grown: 1) as monoculture or intercropped, with or without mulch (in 2010); and 2) intercropped, with mulch and under different irrigation levels (in 2011). Both assays were carried out in a randomized block design with 4 repetitions. In 2010, a 3 × 2 factorial arrangement was applied, combining crop type (carrot monoculture, lettuce monoculture, carrot/lettuce intercrop) and the use (or not) of gliricidia (Gliricidia sepium) mulch. Watering was performed using an automatic controller, operating in response to soil matric potential. In 2011, the irrigation levels were obtained with a combination of drippers of different discharge, resulting in: D2.8 (328.8 mm), D3.75 (412 mm), D5.6 (602.9 mm) and D6.5 (711.2 mm). Carrots were evaluated for crop yield, fresh matter, length and diameter; and lettuce for yield, fresh matter and diameter. Land equivalent ratio (LER) was evaluated in 2010 and water use efficiency (WUE) in both years. Irrespective of mulching, the agronomical performance of lettuce-carrot intercropping was higher in 2011 than in 2010, likely because of different climatic conditions each year. In 2010, lettuce crop compromised carrot yield when grown in the intercropping system, but this association increased LER to above 1.0. The use of mulch did not increase carrot and lettuce yield, but increased significantly the diameters of carrot root in 2010 and 2011 and lettuce head in 2011. The carrot root rottenness increased proportionally to the irrigation levels in 2011. In the mulched intercrop system, irrigation depth D2.8 produced the highest lettuce (26.07 t ha-1) and carrot root (62.60 t ha-1) yields and the highest water use efficiency (26.97 kg m-3).


Intercropped, mulch, irrigation levels, Lactuca sativa L., Daucus carota L., automation, water management, water-use-efficiency, drip irrigation, rotten carrot, family farming, Brazil

Journal: Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment
Year: 2014
Volume: 12
Issue: 1
Category: Agriculture
Pages: 323-328

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