The crop growth simulation driven by daily climatic data can be used to predict the yield under varied climatic conditions. The simulation model can be exploited to reduce production risk and to evaluate the effect of soil, water, field management and climate on crop production. In this study, the FAO AquaCrop model was calibrated and validated for maize under varied sowing dates during 2012 and 2013. The experiment was conducted at Shalimar Campus of Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir during kharif seasons of 2012 and 2013. Calibration was done using data of 28 April sowing of 2012 and validation was done by using data of 10 May and 25 May sowing of 2012, and 28 April, 10 May and 25 May sowing of 2013. The simulated grain yield and crop water use was acceptable as root mean square error (RMSE) between simulated and measured observations was low (≤0.05 t ha−1 and ≤16.72 mm) with high coefficient of efficiency (0.99 and 0.71), respectively. The model also performed satisfactorily for the canopy cover and in-season biomass under varied sowing dates having RMSE ≤9.97% and ≤1.78 t ha−1, respectively.

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