The influence of irrigation depth was evaluated on tomato crop hybrid Debora plus for salad in a field experiment in split-block design with five treatments (irrigation depth of 40, 60, 80, 100 and 120% of crop evapotranspiration - ETc) and four replications. During the experiment, ten plant samples were collected to determine phytomass and leaf area to estimate plant growth parameters for different depths of irrigation. Results showed maximal growth between 70 and 80 days after transplanting in all treatments. Increase in irrigation depth above 80% of ETc increased crop growth rate (CGR), leaf area index (LAI) and total production of tomato fruits, although same commercial fruit yield was obtained with the lower depths. Therefore, an increase in depth of irrigation above 80% of ETc promotes higher water and energy consumption, without providing an increase in commercial yield of tomato fruits.
Solanum lycopersicon; growth analysis; drip irrigation