Reuse potential of laundry greywater for irrigation based on growth, water and nutrient use of tomato

Article


Misra, R. K., Patel, Jishiv H. and Baxi, Vijay. 2010. "Reuse potential of laundry greywater for irrigation based on growth, water and nutrient use of tomato." Journal of Hydrology. 386 (1-4), pp. 95-102. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2010.03.010
Article Title

Reuse potential of laundry greywater for irrigation based on growth, water and nutrient use of tomato

ERA Journal ID1949
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsMisra, R. K. (Author), Patel, Jishiv H. (Author) and Baxi, Vijay (Author)
Journal TitleJournal of Hydrology
Journal Citation386 (1-4), pp. 95-102
Number of Pages8
Year2010
PublisherElsevier
Place of PublicationAmsterdam, Netherlands
ISSN0022-1694
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2010.03.010
Web Address (URL)http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jhydrol
Abstract

Greywater is considered as a valuable resource with a high reuse potential for irrigation of household lawns and gardens. However, there are possibilities of surfactant and sodium accumulation in soil from reuse of greywater which may affect agricultural productivity and environmental sustainability adversely. We conducted a glasshouse experiment to examine variation in growth, water and nutrient use of tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. cv. Grosse Lisse) using tap water (TW), laundry greywater (GW) and solutions of low and high concentration of a detergent surfactant (LC and HC, respectively) as irrigation treatments. Each treatment was replicated five times using a randomised block design. Measurements throughout the experiment showed greywater to be significantly more alkaline and saline than the other types of irrigation water. Although all plants received sixteen irrigations over a period of nine weeks until flowering, there were little or no significant effects of irrigation treatments on plant growth. Soil water retention following irrigation reduced significantly when plants were irrigated with GW or surfactant solutions on only three of twelve occasions. On one occasion, water use measured as evapotranspiration (ET) with GW irrigation was similar to TW, but it was significantly higher than the plants receiving HC irrigation. At harvest, various components of plant biomass and leaf area for GW irrigated plants were found to be similar or significantly higher than the TW irrigated plants with a common trend of GW >= TW > LC >= HC. Whole-plant concentration was measured for twelve essential plant nutrients (N, P, K, Ca, Mg, S, Fe, Cu, Mn, Zn, Mo and B) and Na (often considered as a beneficial nutrient). Irrigation treatments affected the concentration of four nutrients (P, Fe, Zn and Na) and uptake of seven nutrients (P, K, Ca, Mg, Na, Fe and B) significantly. Uptake of these seven nutrients by tomato was generally in the order GW >= TW > HC >= LC. GW irrigated plants had the highest concentration of P, Na and Fe which were 39-85% higher than the TW irrigated plants. Compared with tap water irrigated plants, greywater irrigated plants removed only 6% excess B, but substantially greater quantity of Na (83%) and Fe (86%).These results suggest that laundry greywater has a promising potential for reuse as irrigation water to grow tomato.

Keywordsevapotranspiration; greywater; irrigation; nutrient uptake; surfactants; water use
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020300407. Crop and pasture nutrition
410303. Bioremediation
300201. Agricultural hydrology
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Byline AffiliationsDepartment of Agricultural, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Australian Centre for Sustainable Catchments
Faculty of Engineering and Surveying
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