Models for Estimating Evapotranspiration of Irrigated Eucalypt Plantations

  • S. Theiveyanathan
  • R. G. Benyon
  • V. Koul
  • R. K. Yadav
  • R. I. S. Gill
Part of the Advances in Agroforestry book series (ADAG, volume 13)


Evapotranspiration, a major component of water balance and net primary productivity in plant-based terrestrial production systems at local and regional scale, is difficult to measure. In order to better understand tree growth and water-use relationships, and to design plantations and optimize their irrigation schedules, it is important to estimate the climatically induced evapotranspiration demand of tree crops. This demand, considered as the maximum evapotranspiration (ETm), is regulated by the resistances imposed by canopy surfaces during the process of evapotranspiration. This chapter describes several simple methods that have been proposed previously to estimate ETm and compares various process-based estimates of ETm with water-use rates determined from a water balance study. The observations from the study conducted at Forest Hill near Wagga Wagga, NSW, Australia, show that ETm can be estimated from standard meteorological parameters as a one-step approach using the Penman-Monteith equation. In the absence of required climatic data, ETm can be estimated from the radiation using Priestley-Taylor technique. For irrigation scheduling, however, ETm may be estimated from pan evaporation data using an estimated pan factor. This factor is site specific and varies with the season and the age of the plantations. For purposes of design and scheduling of irrigation, monthly pan factors can also be determined from climatic data using the Penman-Monteith equation.


Vapor Pressure Deficit Actual Evapotranspiration Evaporative Demand Saturation Deficit Combination Equation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Aitken AP (1973) Assessing systematic errors in rainfall-runoff models. J Hydrol 20:121–136CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Arnell NW, Reynard NS (1996) The effects of climate change due to global warming on river flows in Great Britain. J Hydrol 183:397–424CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Carbon BA, Bartle GA, Murray AM (1981) Patterns of water stress and transpiration in jarrah (Eucalyptus marginata Donn ex Sm.) forests. Aust For Res 11:191–200Google Scholar
  4. Chiew FHS, Kamaladasa NN, Malano HM, McMahon TA (1995) Penman-Monteith, FAO-24 reference crop evapotranspiration and class-A pan data in Australia. Agric Water Manage 28:9–21CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Colquhoun IJ, Ridge RW, Bell DT, Loneragan WA, Kuo J (1984) Comparative studies in selected species of Eucalyptus used in rehabilitation of the northern Jarrah forest, Western Australia. 1. Patterns of xylem pressure potential and diffusive resistance of leaves. Aust J Bot 32:367–373CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Connor DJ (1975) Growth, water relations and yield of wheat. Aust J Plant Physiol 2:353–366CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Dalton J (1802) Experimental essays on the constitution of mixed gases; on the force of steam or vapour from water and other liquids in different temperatures, both in a Torricellian vacuum and in air; on evaporation and on the expansion of gases by heat. Mem Manch Lit Philos Soc 5:535–602Google Scholar
  8. Davies JA, Allen CD (1973) Equilibrium, potential and actual evaporation from cropped surfaces in Southern Ontario. J Appl Meteorol 18:898–903Google Scholar
  9. Dilley AC, Shepherd W (1972) Potential evaporation from pasture and potatoes at Aspendale. Agric Meteorol 10:283–300CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Dolman AJ, Gash JHC, Roberts J, Shuttleworth WJ (1991) Stomatal and surface conductance of tropical rainforest. Agric For Meteorol 54:303–318CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Domec J-C, Sun G, Noormets A, Michael J, Gavazzi-Emrys TA, Erika-Cohen JJ, Swenson S, McNulty G, John SK (2012) A comparison of three methods to estimate evapotranspiration in two contrasting Loblolly pine plantations: age-related changes in water use and drought sensitivity of evapotranspiration components. For Sci 58:497–512Google Scholar
  12. Doorenbos J, Kassam AH (1979) Yield response to water. FAO Irrig Drainage Paper 33:193Google Scholar
  13. Doorenbos J, Pruitt WO (1977) Guidelines for predicting crop water requirements. FAO Irrig Drainage Paper 24:207Google Scholar
  14. Dunin FX, Aston AR (1984) The development and proving of models of large-scale evapotranspiration: an Australian study. Agric Water Manage 8:305–323CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Dunin FX, Mackay SM (1982). Evaporation of eucalypt and coniferous forest communities. In: Proceedings of the first national symposium on forest hydrology, Melbourne, pp 18–35Google Scholar
  16. Dye PJ (1993) Estimating water use by Eucalptus grandis with the Penman-Monteith equation. In: Swanson RH, Bernier PY, Woodward PD (eds) Forest hydrology and watershed management, proceedings of the Vancouver symposium, pp 329–337Google Scholar
  17. Farahani HJ, Ahuja LR (1996) Evapotranspiration modeling of partial canopy/residue-covered fields. Trans ASAE 39:2051–2064CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Farahani HJ, Bausch WC (1995) Performance of evapotranspiration models for maizedbare soil to closed canopy. Trans ASAE 38:1049–1059CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Federer CA, Vorösmarty CJ, Fekete B (1996) Intercomparison of methods for calculating potential evaporation in regional and global water balance models. Water Resour Res 32:2315–2321CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Fischer RA (1979) Growth and water limitations to dryland wheat yield in Australia; a physiological framework. J Aust Inst Agric Sci 45:83–95Google Scholar
  21. Ford CR, Hubbard RM, Kloeppel BD, Vose J (2007) A comparison of sap flux-based evapotranspiration estimates with catchment-scale water balance. Agric For Meteorol 145:176–185CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Ge Sun, Karrin A, Jiquan C, Shiping C, Chelcy RF, Guanghui L, Chenfeng L, Nan L, Steven GM, Haixia M, Asko N, James MV, Burkhard W, Melanie Z, Yan Z, Zhiqiang Z (2010) A general predictive model for estimating monthly ecosystem evapotranspiration. Ecohydrology 4:245–255CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Goldstein AH, Hultman NE, Fracheboud JM, Bauer MR, Panek JA, Xu M, Qi Y, Guenther AB, Baugh W (2000) Effects of climate variability on the carbon dioxide, water, and sensible heat fluxes above a ponderosa pine plantation in the Sierra Nevada (CA). Agric For Meteorol 101:113–129CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Greenwood EAN, Klein L, Beresford JD, Watson GD (1985) Differences in annual evaporation between grazed pasture and Eucalyptus species in plantations on a saline farm catchment. J Hydrol 77:237–252CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hookey GR, Bartle JR, Loh IC (1987) Water use of eucalypts above saline groundwater. Final report: Australian water resources. Council Research Project 84/166. Water Authority of Western Australia, Perth, p 40Google Scholar
  26. Jenson ME (ed) (1973) Consumptive use of water and irrigation water requirements. American Society of Civil Engineers, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  27. Jones AJ, Bauder JW (1987) Computer-assisted irrigation scheduling: an educational tool. Appl Agric Res 2:260–271Google Scholar
  28. Joshua BF, Terry A, DeBiase YQ, Ming X, Goldstein AH (2005) Evapotranspiration models compared on a Sierra Nevada forest ecosystem. Environ Model Softw 20:783–796CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kaczmarek Z, Strzepek KM, Somlyo-dy L, Priazhinskaya V (eds) (1996) Water resources management in the face of climatic/hydrologic uncertainties. Kluwer, HinghamGoogle Scholar
  30. Kite G (1998) Integration of forest ecosystem and climatic models with a hydrologic model. J Am Water Resour Assoc 34:743–753CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Leuning R, Kriedemann PE, McMurtrie RE (1991a) Simulation of evapotranspiration by trees. Agric Water Manage 19:205–221CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Leuning R, Wang YP, Cromer RN (1991b) Model simulations of spatial distributions and daily totals of photosynthesis in Eucalyptus grandis canopies. Oecologia 88:494–503CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Linacre ET (1968) Estimating the net-radiation flux. Agric Meteorol 5:49–63CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Lowe PR (1977) An approximating polynomial for the computation of saturation vapour pressure. J Appl Meteorol 16:100–103CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. McNaughton KG, Black TA (1973) A study of evapotranspiration for dryland fir forest using the energy balance application. Water Resour Res 9:1579–1590CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Monteith JL (1965) Evaporation and environment. In: The state and movement of water in living organisms. Symposium of Society of Experimental Biology 19, pp 205–234Google Scholar
  37. Monteith JL (1986) How do crops manipulate water supply and demand? Philos Trans Roy Soc Lond A 316:245–259CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Musselman RC, Fox DG (1991) A review of the role of temperate forests in the global CO2 balance. J Air Waste Manage Assoc 41:798–807CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Myers BJ, Bond WJ, Benyon RG, Falkiner RA, Polglase PJ, Smith CJ, Snow VO, Theiveyanathan S (1999) Sustainable effluent-irrigated plantations: an Australian guideline. CSIRO Forestry and Forest Products, Canberra, p 286Google Scholar
  40. Myers BJ, Talsma T (1992) Site water balance and tree water status in irrigated and fertilised stands of Pinus radiata. For Ecol Manage 52:17–42CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Myers BJ, Theiveyanathan S, O’Brien ND, Bond WJ (1996) Growth and water use of effluent-irrigated Eucalyptus grandis and Pinus radiata plantations. Tree Physiol 16:211–219CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  42. Naoum S, Tsanis IK (2003) Hydroinformatics in evapotranspiration estimation. Environ Model Softw 18:261–271CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Passioura JB (1977) Grain yield, harvest index and water use of wheat. J Aust Inst Agric Sci 43:117–120Google Scholar
  44. Penman HL (1948) Natural evaporation for open water, bare soil and grass. Proc Roy Soc Lond A 193:120–146CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Penman HL (1956) Estimating evaporation. Trans Am Geophys Union 37:43–50CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Pereira AR, Villa-Nova NA (1992) Analysis of Priestley-Taylor parameter. Agric Forest Meteorol 61:1–9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Pereira AR, Villa-Nova NA, Pereira AS, Barbieri V (1995) A model for the class A pan coefficient. Agric Forest Meteorol 76:75–82CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Perry MW (1987) Water use efficiency of non-irrigated field crops. In: Proceedings of the fourth Australian agronomy conference La Trobe University Melbourne, Victoria pp 83–99Google Scholar
  49. Persson G (1995) Willow stand evapotranspiration simulated for Swedish soils. Agric Water Manage 28:271–293CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Priestley CHB, Taylor RJ (1972) On the assessment of surface heat flux and evaporation using large-scale parameters. Mon Weather Rev 100:81–92CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Raupach MR (1995) Vegetation-atmosphere interaction and surface conductance at leaf, canopy and regional scales. Agric For Meteorol 73:151–179CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Ritchie JT, Burnett E (1971) Dryland evaporative flux in a subhumid climate: 1. Micrometeorological influences. Agron J 63:51–52CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Savabi MR, Stockle CO (2001) Modeling the possible impact of increased CO2 and temperature on soil water balance, crop yield and soil erosion. Environ Model Softw 16:631–640CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Shuttleworth WJ (1989) Micrometeorology of temperate and tropical forest. Philos Trans Roy Soc Lond B 324:299–334CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Shuttleworth WJ, Calder IR (1979) Has the Priestley-Taylor equation any relevance to forest evaporation? J Appl Meteorol 18:639–646CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Smittle DA, Dickens WL (1992) Water budgets to schedule irrigation for vegetables. Hortic Technol 2:54–59Google Scholar
  57. Smittle DA, Dickens WL, Hayes MJ (1992) An irrigation scheduling model for summer squash. J Am Soc Hortic Sci 117:717–720Google Scholar
  58. Spittlehouse DL, Black TA (1979) Determination of forest evapotranspiration using Bowen ratio and eddy correlation measurements. J Appl Meteorol 18:647–653CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Stannard ID (1993) Comparison of Penman-Monteith, Shuttleworth-Wallace, and modified Priestley-Taylor evapotranspiration models for wildland vegetation in semiarid rangeland. Water Resour Res 29:1379–1392CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Stewart JI, Cuenca RH, Pruitt WO, Hagan RM, Tosso J (1977a) W-67 determination and utilization of crop water production functions for principal Californian crops. California Contributions Project Report, University of California, Davis, p 27Google Scholar
  61. Stewart JI, Hanks RJ, Danielson RE, Jackson EB, Hagan RM, Pruitt WO, Franklin WT, Riley JP (1977b) Optimizing crop production through control of water and salinity levels in the soil. Utah Water Laboratory PRWG 151-1, Logan, p 191Google Scholar
  62. Szeicz G, Endrodi G, Tajchman S (1969) Aerodynamic and surface factors in evaporation. Water Resour Res 5:380–394CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Tanner CB (1967) Measurement of evapotranspiration. Agron J 11:534–574Google Scholar
  64. Tanner CB, Sinclair TR (1983) Efficient water use in crop production. Research or re-research. In: Taylor MH, Jordan WR, Sinclair RT (eds) Limitations to efficient water use in crop production. American Society of Agronomy, Madison, pp 1–27Google Scholar
  65. Thom AS, Oliver HR (1977) On Penman’s equation for estimating regional evaporation. Quart J Roy Meteorol Soc 103:345–357CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Theiveyanathan S, Benyon RG, Marcar NE, Myers BJ, Polglase PJ, Falkiner RA (2004) An irrigation-scheduling model for application of saline water to tree plantations. For Ecol Manage 193:97–112CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Tourula T, Heikinheimo M (1998) Modeling evapotranspiration from a barley field over the growing season. Agric For Meteorol 91:237–250CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. VEMAP Members (1995) Vegetation/ecosystem modeling and analysis project: comparing biogeography and biogeochemistry models in a continental-scale study of terrestrial ecosystem responses to climate change and CO2 doubling. Glob Biogeochem Cycles 9:407–437CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Viswanadham Y, Silva-Filho VP, Andre RGB (1991) The Priestley-Taylor parameter α for the Amazon forest. For Ecol Manage 38:211–225CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Vorösmarty CJ, Federer CA, Schloss AL (1998) Potential evaporation functions compared on US watersheds: possible implications for global-scale water balance and terrestrial ecosystem modeling. J Hydrol 207:147–169CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Wallace JS (1994) Calculating evaporation: resistance to factors. Agric For Meteorol 73:353–366CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Watts PJ, Hancock NH (1984) Evaporation and potential evaporation – a practical approach for agricultural engineers. In: Proceedings of conference on agriculture engineering Bundaberg, Queensland, Australia, pp 290–297Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer India 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Theiveyanathan
    • 1
  • R. G. Benyon
    • 2
  • V. Koul
    • 3
  • R. K. Yadav
    • 4
  • R. I. S. Gill
    • 5
  1. 1.Formerly, Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Sustainable EcosystemsCanberraAustralia
  2. 2.Forest Hydrology, Department of Forest and Ecosystem ScienceUniversity of MelbourneParkvilleAustralia
  3. 3.CSIRO Ecosystem SciencesCanberraAustralia
  4. 4.Central Soil Salinity Research InstituteKarnalIndia
  5. 5.Department of Forestry and Natural ResourcesPunjab Agricultural UniversityLudhianaIndia

Personalised recommendations