The curve number (CN) method is widely applied around the world to estimate direct runoff and the corresponding hydrograph ofa rainfall event. However, there is no information on its performance in olive orchards on the catchment scale. In this work, the CN methodwas applied in three small catchments in southern Spain with different soil types, topography, and management. A rainfall-runoff data set ofsix years was used to test the usefulness of the method and the accuracy of its reference parameterization (CNs) and of the initial abstraction(Ia). CN medians in the catchments were between 83 and 87. Classical equations based on the use of the 10th, 50th, and 90th CN percentilesfor determining the antecedent moisture content (AMC) provided very good results in two of the catchments. In the third catchment, with themost arid hydrological pattern (annual rainfall <400 mm) and the most impervious areas of parental material, very poor performance wasachieved. In addition, cumulative precipitation was not a good indicator of AMC. Finally, significant deviations were observed in referenceCNs for sandy soils that should be treated with caution for hydrological planning. They illustrate the need for new studies evaluating thehydrological behavior of olive orchard catchments with different environmental features and management practice.

Curve Numbers for olive orchard catchments: a case study in Southern Spain

LICCIARDELLO, FELICIANA;
2015

Abstract

The curve number (CN) method is widely applied around the world to estimate direct runoff and the corresponding hydrograph ofa rainfall event. However, there is no information on its performance in olive orchards on the catchment scale. In this work, the CN methodwas applied in three small catchments in southern Spain with different soil types, topography, and management. A rainfall-runoff data set ofsix years was used to test the usefulness of the method and the accuracy of its reference parameterization (CNs) and of the initial abstraction(Ia). CN medians in the catchments were between 83 and 87. Classical equations based on the use of the 10th, 50th, and 90th CN percentilesfor determining the antecedent moisture content (AMC) provided very good results in two of the catchments. In the third catchment, with themost arid hydrological pattern (annual rainfall <400 mm) and the most impervious areas of parental material, very poor performance wasachieved. In addition, cumulative precipitation was not a good indicator of AMC. Finally, significant deviations were observed in referenceCNs for sandy soils that should be treated with caution for hydrological planning. They illustrate the need for new studies evaluating thehydrological behavior of olive orchard catchments with different environmental features and management practice.
Curve number,; Initial abstraction; Olive orchard
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/255054
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