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Drought reduces crop yields not only in areas of arid climate. The impact of droughts depends on the crop growth stage and soil properties. The frequency of droughts will increase due to climate change. It is important to determine the environmental variables that have the strongest effect on wheat yields in dry years. The effect of soil and weather on wheat yield was evaluated in 2018, which was considered a very dry year in Europe. The winter wheat yield data from 19 trial locations of the Research Center of Cultivar Testing (COBORU), Poland, were used. Soil data from the trial locations, mean air temperature (T) and precipitation (P) were considered as environmental factors, as well as the climatic water balance (CWB). The hydrothermal coefficient (HTC), which is based on P and T, was also used. The effect of these factors on winter wheat yield was related to the weather conditions at particular growth stages. The soil had a greater effect than the weather conditions. CWB, P, T and HTC showed a clear relationship with winter wheat yield. Soil data and HTC are the factors most recommended for models predicting crop yields. In the selection of drought-tolerant genotypes, the plants should be subjected to stress especially during the heading and grain filling growth stages.


The goal of the paper was to determine surface water resources of an agricultural watershed representative for the areas of intensive crop production in the Kujawy region. This area is characterised by the lowest average annual precipitation in Poland and high water demands related to the intensive crop production.

Hydrological studies were carried out in 2007–2011 in the upper Zgłowiączka River watershed located in the eastern part of the analysed region. Over 90% of the study area is used as an arable land.

Water velocity in the river bed and water level were measured at the outlet of the watershed in the river cross-section Samszyce.

The upper Zgłowiączka River has a snow-rainfall hydrological regime, strongly modified by anthropogenic activities related to the intensive crop production and installation of subsurface drainage system. The study period was characterised by very large temporal variability of hydrological conditions. The mean annual outflow coefficient amounted to 18% and varied highly in time: from 3% in the average years to 62% in the abnormally wet 2011. Average discharge (SSQ) in the Samszyce river cross-section was equal to 0.25 m3·s−1, and the mean unit outflow – to 3.2 dm3·s−1·km−2. The results of the study show that disposable surface water resources of the Kujawy region are very small, especially in the summer half-year. Thus, their utilization as a potential source of water for crop irrigation can be taken into account only, if water excesses will be retained within the watershed and used in conjunction with groundwater resources.


Providing information on the impacts of climate change on hydrological processes is becoming ever more critical. Modelling and evaluating the expected changes of the water resources over different spatial and time scales can be useful in several fields, e.g. agriculture, forestry and water management. Previously a Budyko-type spatially distributed long-term climate-runoff model was developed for Hungary. This research includes the validation of the model using historical precipitation and streamflow measurements for three nested sub-catchments of the Zala River Basin (Hungary), an essential runoff contributing region to Lake Balaton (the largest shallow lake in Central Europe). The differences between the calculated (from water balance) and the estimated (by the model) mean annual evapotranspiration varied between 0.4% and 3.6% in the validation periods in the sub-catchments examined. Predictions of the main components of the water balance (evapotranspiration and runoff) for the Zala Basin are also presented in this study using precipitation and temperature results of 12 regional climate model simulations (A1B scenario) as input data. According to the projections, the mean annual temperature will be higher from period to period (2011–2040, 2041–2070, 2071–2100), while the change of the annual precipitation sum is not significant. The mean annual evapotranspiration rate is expected to increase slightly during the 21st century, while for runoff a substantial decrease can be anticipated which may exceed 40% by 2071–2100 relative to the reference period (1981–2010). As a result of this predicted reduction, the runoff from the Zala Basin may not be enough to balance the increased evaporation rate of Lake Balaton, transforming it into a closed lake without outflow.


In this study we analyzed the effect of selected biometeorological variables on the onset of phenophases in three beech stands in different climatic areas (warm, moderately warm and cold). We have focused on two phenophases - leaf unfolding and leaf colouring. Timing of both phenophases was identified visually and using series of MODIS satellite images. The data were collected during a 13-year period (2000-2012). For the spring period, we found a significant dependence between temperature and precipitation-based biometeorological variables and leaf unfolding in both datasets - those based on visual and remote sensing-based observations. The average air temperature in the period from February-April was the most significant factor which initiated the onset of beginning of leaf unfolding in all three investigated stands. The evapotranspiration-based biometeorological variables (climatic water balance, actual evapotranspiration, dryness index) had no effect on the onset of the beginning of leaf unfolding observed using both methods. The high precipitation totals in April caused the later onset of leaf unfolding in all stands. The relationship between the first autumn phenophase - leaf colouring and biometeorological variables was found significant in beech stand in the warm climatic area only.

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