Water use efficiency of energy sorghum in South Texas Conference Paper uri icon


  • This study evaluated performance of energy sorghum cultivars, their water use efficiency and farm (net) revenue under limited water availability. Energy sorghum was produced under four water treatments: rain-fed dry-land, 50% (level 2), 75% (level 3) and 100% (level 4) of crop ET. Biomass yields of energy sorghum ranged from 5.8 to 16.6 Mg ha-1 (dry weight) after 126 days of growth. Average water use efficiencies ranged from 39.5 to 23.4 kg ha-1 mm-1. Net return for sorghum was approximately $410 ha-1 with water depths above 400 mm. The study results suggested that it is possible to obtain more than 60 Mg ha-1 of sorghum biomass (fresh weight basis) with at least 425 mm of water. While biomass yield under irrigation was greater than rain-fed conditions, there were no significant differences among irrigation treatments. Biomass composition did not differ significantly among water treatments suggesting the biofuel quality can be maintained even at deficit water conditions. The energy efficiencies for the production of ethanol from sorghum biomass ranged from 1.1 to 1.3 L m3 of water in 2012 and 0.8 to 1.5 L m3 in 2014.

published proceedings

  • Joint ASABE/IA Irrigation Symposium 2015: Emerging Technologies for Sustainable Irrigation

author list (cited authors)

  • Enciso, J., Jifon, J., Ribera, L., & Ganjegunte, G. K.

complete list of authors

  • Enciso, J||Jifon, J||Ribera, L||Ganjegunte, GK

publication date

  • January 2015