Optimization of Water Use Efficiency of Hydroponic Maize Fodder Production System under Different Microclimatic Conditions

Adarsha Gopalakrishna Bhat *

Division of Agricultural Engineering, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, PUSA, New Delhi, 110012, India.

A. Jinu

Department of Soil and Water Conservation Engineering, Kelappaji College of Agricultural Engineering and Technology, Kerala Agricultural University, Thrissur 679573, India.

K. K. Sathian

Department of Soil and Water Conservation Engineering, Kelappaji College of Agricultural Engineering and Technology, Kerala Agricultural University, Thrissur 679573, India.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Aims: Hydroponic method of producing fodder is an advanced technique which helps to achieve very high-water use efficiency (WUE). The main objective of the study was to optimize WUE by controlling the system and reducing the stress on the crops to give higher yield.

Study Design: The experiment employed a statistical design known as Completely Randomized Design Place and duration of the study: The experiment was carried out in the Precision Farming Development Centre (PFDC) building, Kelappaji College of Agricultural Engineering and Technology (KCAET), Tavanur during May and June 2021.

Methodology: Three different water application methods namely, mist (I1), micro sprinkler (I2), fogger (I3) was selected. Artificial light source of LED red (L1), LED blue (L2), LED red + blue (L3) and sunlight (L4) were considered for the study. Statistical analysis was conducted to understand the significance of different treatments used in the experiment in optimizing yield and WUE of the system.

Results: Highest yield was observed in treatment involving fogger irrigation and LED red + blue (2.11 kg/tray) with highest WUE (515.43 kg/m3) compared to other treatments. Seed to fodder ratio obtained was 1:6. Chemical analysis showed higher percentage of crude protein (13.56%) and crude fibre (12.59%) in this treatment. Higher growth of green fodder under artificial light source can be attributed to the continuous supply of energy compared to highly varying sunlight and also the uniform distribution of water by fogger irrigation which maintained favourable condition for fodder growth.

Conclusion: Results clearly indicated that growing green fodder with artificial light source (LED red + blue) and water supply with fogger can be recommended to farmers for achieving better growth of green fodder for domestic animals.

Keywords: Hydroponics, water use efficiency, LED, green fodder

How to Cite

Bhat, Adarsha Gopalakrishna, A. Jinu, and K. K. Sathian. 2023. “Optimization of Water Use Efficiency of Hydroponic Maize Fodder Production System under Different Microclimatic Conditions”. International Journal of Environment and Climate Change 13 (9):3354-67. https://doi.org/10.9734/ijecc/2023/v13i92588.


Download data is not yet available.


Roy AK, Agrawal RK, Bhardwaj NR, Mishra AK, Mahanta SK. Revisiting national forage demand and availability scenario. Indian fodder scenario: Redefining state wise status. ICAR-AICRP on Forage Crops and Utilization, Jhansi, India. 2019;1-21.

Sanjeev kumar B, Singh G. 20th Livestock census-2019 All India Report; 2019.

Joshi M, Vaishnava CS, Sharma SK. Economical analysis of feeding hydroponics maize fodder with and without supplementation of probiotic (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) in gir calves. Int. J. Sci. Environ. Technol. 2018; 7(3):809-814.

Dung DD, IRG, JVN. Nutrient content and in-sacco digestibility of barley grain and sprouted barley. Medwell Journals. 2010; 9:2485–2492.

Chavan JK, Kadam SS. Nutritional improvement of cereals by sprouting. Crit. Rev. Food Sci. Nutr. 1989; 28:401–437. Available:https://doi.org/10.1080/10408398909527508

Kumar Roy A, Rattan Bhardwaj N, Kumar Mahanta S. Revisiting National Forage Demand and Availability Scenario Plant genetic resource View project Forage Seed View project; 2019.

Barwant M. Commercial maize hydroponics fodder production Barwant MM, et al. J Agri Sci Res. 2018;2(2):10-13.


Ramteke R, Doneria R, Gendley MK. Hydroponic techniques for fodder production; 2019.

Gunasekaran S, Bandeswaran C, Valli C. Low-cost hydroponic fodder production technology for sustainable livestock farming during fodder scarcity. Current Science. 2019;116:526-528.

Al Ajmi A, Salih AA, Kadim I, Othman Y. Yield and WUE of barley fodder produced under hydroponic system in GCC countries using tertiary treated sewage effluents. J. Phytol. 2009;1:342–348.

Kobayashi K, Amore T, Lazaro M. Light-Emitting Diodes (LEDs) for Miniature Hydroponic Lettuce. Opt. Photonics J. 2013;03:74–77. Available:https://doi.org/10.4236/opj.2013.31012

Bakshi MPS, Wadhwa M, Makkar HP. Hydroponic fodder production: A critical assessment. Broadening Horizons. 2017; 48:2-10.

Islam R, Nuha N, Akbar MA. Effect of seed rate and water level on production and chemical analysis of hydroponic fodder IV. 2016;6724–6753.

Kumar Naik P. Effect of seed rate on yield and proximate constituents of different parts of hydroponics maize fodder Evaluation of broken rice or tuber crops based feed mixture supplement in White Pekin ducks in semi-intensive rearing system View project Evaluation of. Indian J. Anim. Sci. 2017;87:109–112.

Al-Karaki GN, Al-Hashimi M. Green fodder production and WUE of some forage crops under hydroponic conditions. ISRN Agron. 2012;1–5. Available:https://doi.org/10.5402/2012/924672

Bian Z, Jiang N, Grundy S, Lu C. Uncovering LED light effects on plant growth: New angles and perspectives – LED light for improving plant growth, nutrition and energy-use efficiency.Acta Hortic. 2018;1227;491–498.