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Data from: Controlled drainage and subirrigation suitability in the United States: A meta-analysis of crop yield and soil moisture effects


Singh, Navdeep et al. (2022), Data from: Controlled drainage and subirrigation suitability in the United States: A meta-analysis of crop yield and soil moisture effects, Dryad, Dataset,


Controlled drainage and subirrigation (CDSI) is an important water management strategy in many regions, but the conditions under which CDSI is most likely to increase crop yield and soil moisture are not fully understood. A meta-analysis, consisting of 154 pairwise observations from replicated and randomized trials in 30 peer-reviewed primary research articles on CDSI (6 controlled drainage, 24 CDSI, analyzed together due to data scarcity), was conducted to study the responses of yield and soil moisture to CDSI, and investigate how crop type, soil texture, and cumulative growing season precipitation (PGS) influence these responses. Based on the yield response to these moderating factors, we used a fuzzy-logic approach to map potentially suitable locations for CDSI in the conterminous United States. On average, CDSI increased yield by 8.0% (95% CI = 1.8–14.7%) compared with conventional free drainage. The yield response to CDSI did not differ among crops. However, a greater yield response to CDSI was observed in medium-textured soils (19.4% increase; 95% CI = 12.4–27.0%) than in coarse- or fine-textured soils. The positive effect of CDSI on yield increased with decreasing PGS in coarse- and medium-textured soils. There was no clear effect of CDSI on soil moisture, nor did any moderators influence this relationship, though this may be attributed to the scarcity of studies on CDSI reporting soil moisture. The fuzzy-logic-based approach revealed that while potentially suitable areas are mostly concentrated in the well studied U. S. Midwest, these areas also exist in other regions where CDSI may warrant further study.


This data is extracted from the published peer reviewed research articles on controlled drainage and subirrigation from 1990 to 2020.

Additional information can be found in Singh, N., Kogan, C., Chaudhary, S., Rajagopalan, K., & LaHue, G. T. (2022). Controlled drainage and subirrigation suitability in the United States: A meta-analysis of crop yield and soil moisture effects. Vadose Zone Journal, e20219.

Usage Notes


R software 

ArcGIS pro software


Washington State Department of Ecology through the Joint Legislative Task Force on Water Supply, Award: WRFA-1921-WaStUn- 00004

USDA NIFA Hatch Project, Award: 1014527