A modeling approach for assessing rice cropping cycle affected by flooding, salinity intrusion, and monsoon rains in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam

Akihiko Kotera, Khang Duy Nguyen, Toshihiro Sakamoto, Toshichika Iizumi, Masayuki Yokozawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)


We developed a crop scheduling model for rice cultivation in the Vietnam Mekong Delta (VMD), focusing on the adaptive behavior of crop planning to various water resource constraints. In addition, we also examined the effects of environmental change on rice cultivation in the last decade. In the VMD, multiple rice cropping is practiced under a variety of adverse water conditions, including flooding, salinity intrusion, and irregular monsoon rains. These environmental changes influence the durations of growing seasons and the number of crops per year, resulting in changes in productivity. To validate the performance of the model, we compared model estimates for the heading date and changes in leaf area index at nine sites with estimates of these parameters derived from MODIS satellite time series data for the period 2002-2006. The root mean square errors of heading date between the modeled and satellite data in the upper, middle, and coastal regions of the delta were 17.6, 11.2, and 13.0 days, respectively. Based on the model, we examined case studies to assess the changes in cropping cycles and crop failures in the VMD due to extreme flooding in 2000 and salinity intrusion in 2004 by applying evaluation indices defined by available period for cultivation (APC) and safe margin for cropping (SMC) which is defined as the marginal time between APC and the period required for cultivation. Findings of case studies suggested that a small difference in the SMC of the cropping pattern is critical to the stability and productive capacity of the rice crop.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-354
Number of pages12
JournalPaddy and Water Environment
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jul



  • Adaptive behavior
  • Crop calendar
  • Crop failure
  • Vulnerability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Water Science and Technology

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