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Idesia (Arica)

versión On-line ISSN 0718-3429


RIQUELME-GARCES, Alejandro; GONZALEZ-VALLEJOS, Francisco; CONTRERAS-LUQUE, Pablo  y  MAZUELA, Pilar. Management of vegetable crops and its effect on the sustainability of a coastal valley in the Atacama desert, Chile. Idesia [online]. 2013, vol.31, n.3, pp.113-117. ISSN 0718-3429.

The coastal valleys of the XV Region of Chile have exceptional climatic conditions for vegetable cultivation during the entire year; this region is the main supplier of vegetables to the central part of the country during winter. The high cost of land in the Azapa Valley and the scarce availability of water have obliged vegetable producer to improve their production systems to maintain this activity. Cultivation under nets has improved the phytosanitary conditions of crops and impacted production positively. The objective of this study was to describe two production processes of tomato cultivation (open air and protected with net) and pepper (under netting) and their effects on production, water use efficiency and the concentration of salts which are returned to the environment. The results indicate that protected systems improve water use efficiency and decrease the emission of nutrients to the environment per kg produced. We suggest that with the new cultivation techniques it is possible to improve considerably the efficiency of resource use without affecting production.

Palabras clave : water efficiency; salinity; Azapa valley; tomato; pepper; off-season.

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