Personal Details

Name: Naftali Lazarovitch

Address at work: Wyler Department for Dryland Agriculture,

French Associates Institute for Agriculture and Biotechnology of Drylands, Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Sede Boqer Campus, 84990, Israel.

Phone: 972-8-6563454, Fax: 972-8-6596757, lazarovi@bgu.ac.il



Academic Status: Associate Professor      



​Lazarovitch et al. (Projects Summary 2004-2016): Multi-Dimensional Water Flow and Solute Transport using HYDRUS Codes

​Lazarovitch, N. and Warrick A.W, Exercises in Soil Physics, Catena Verlag GMBH, ISBN: 978-3-923381-60-9

naftali web.jpg
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VZJ special section, The root zone: Soil physics and beyond[ Combined PDF ]
​​​Special section of Plant and Soil
Exposing the hidden half: root research at the forefront of science ​Jhonathan E. Ephrath, Tamir Klein, Robert E. Sharp and Naftali Lazarovitch ​​



1994-1997 B.Sc. - Department of Soil and Water Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (HUJ).

1997-2001 M.Sc. - Department of Soil and Water Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences, HUJ.

Name of advisor: Prof. Uri Shani.

Title of thesis: The effect of soil water potential, hydraulic properties and source characteristic on the discharge of subsurface sources.

2001-2006 Ph.D. - Department of Soil and Water Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences, HUJ.

Name of advisor: Prof. Uri Shani.

Title of thesis: Feedback processes in a subsurface water source-soil-plant-atmosphere continuum.

Employment History

2015-present Associate Professor, Wyler Department for Dryland Agriculture, French Associates Institute for Agriculture and Biotechnology of Drylands, Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. 

2011-2015 Senior Lecturer, Wyler Department for Dryland Agriculture, French Associates Institute for Agriculture and Biotechnology of Drylands, Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.

2006-2011     Lecturer, Wyler Department for Dryland Agriculture, French Associates Institute for Agriculture and Biotechnology of Drylands, Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.

2005-2006 Post-Doctoral Fellow, Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science, University of Arizona with Arthur W. Warrick.

2005 Post-Doctoral Fellow, U.S. Salinity Laboratory Riverside, California with Scott A. Bradford.

2004-2005  Post-Doctoral Fellow, Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science University of Arizona with Thomas L. Thompson and Arthur W. Warrick.

1997-2004  Teaching Assistant, Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences, HUJ (Physics A, Physics B, Physical Chemistry, Fundamentals of Soil Science, Fundamentals of Irrigation Science, Irrigation Principles, Crop Irrigation Regimes, Basic Irrigation Systems)

1996-1997  Research Assistant, Faculty of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences, HUJ.

Professional Ac​​tivities

2012 - present Teaching committee - Irrigation and Plant Environment, Albert Katz International School, (BGU).

2007 - present         Israeli Soil Science Society Council.

2012 - present         Associate editor, Irrigation science.

2015 - present         Associate editor, Vadose Zone Journal.

Membership in professional​/scientific societies

2004 - present         Soil Science Society of America.

2006 - present          International Soil Science Society.

2007 - present          Israeli Soil Science Society.

2008 - present          Lysimeter Research Group.

2010 - present           European Geosciences Union.         

Educational Activities

(a) Courses t​aught

Albert Katz International School for Desert Studies, BGU, Sede Boqer Campus.

1. Soil physics - 001-2-2038 (graduate level).

2. Crop irrigation regimes - 001-2-2035 (graduate level).

3. Advanced modeling of water flow and contaminant transport in porous media using HYDRUS  

   software packages - 001-2-2039software packages - 001-2-2039 (graduate level) - Jointly with  

   Jirka Šimůnek.

4. Operation and analysis of environmental monitoring systems - 001-2-5055 (graduate level) -

    Jointly with Ofer Dahan.

(b) Research Students

1.   Nadav Tal (BGU) - M.Sc., 2007-2009.

2.   Or Sperling (BGU) - M.Sc., 2007-2009.

3.   Parashuram Bhantana (BGU) - M.Sc., 2007-2009.

4.   Tom Groenveld (BGU) - Jointly with Alon Ben-Gal - M.Sc., 2008-2010.

5.   Eviatar Itiel (BGU) - Jointly with Moshe Silberbush and Alon Ben-Gal - Ph.D., 2008-2013.

6.   Adam Abramson (BGU) - Jointly with Eilon Adar and Alon Tal - Ph.D., 2008-2013.

7.   Sharon Dabach (HUJ) - Jointly with Uri Shani - Ph.D., 2008-2014.

8.   Lonia Friedlander (BGU) - Jointly with Alon Tal - M.Sc., 2008-2010.

9.   Leilah Krounbi (BGU) - M.Sc., 2008-2011.

10. Or Sperling (BGU) - Jointly with Amnon Schwartz- Ph.D., 2009-2013.

11. Johana Bachman (Osnabrück, Germany)- Jointly with Rüdiger Anlauf- M.Sc., 2009-2010.

12. Dilia Kool (BGU) - Jointly with Alon Ben-Gal and Nurit Agam - Ph.D., 2010-2015.

13. Iael Raij (BGU) - M.Sc., 2011-2013.

14. Miyanda Moombe (BGU) - M.Sc., 2012-2014.

15. Endale Geta (BGU) - M.Sc., Jointly with Shimon Rachmilevitch - 2012-2014.

16. Shaham Pevzner (BGU) - M.Sc., 2013-2015.

17. Iael Raij (BGU) - Ph.D., 2013-.

18. Arevalo Neira Abraham Isaac (BGU) - M.Sc., 2013-2016.

19. Zhen Jingbo (BGU) - M.Sc., 2014-2016.

20. John Okoth (BGU)-Ph.D. -Jointly with Shimon Rachmilevitch and Uri Yermiyahu, 2014-.

21. Ben Cohen (BGU) - M.Sc. - Jointly with Jack Gilron, 2014-2016.

22. Adi Perelman (BGU) - Ph.D., 2014-.

23. Silvia Gobrecht (BGU) - Jointly with Shimon Rachmilevitch - M.Sc., 2014-2016.

24. Moses Kwame Aidoo (BGU) - Jointly with Shimon Rachmilevitch and Aharon Fait - Ph.D., 2014-.

25. Tom Groenveld (BGU) - Ph.D., 2015-.

26. Theodor Bughici (BGU) - Ph.D., 2015-.

27. Zhen Jingbo (BGU) - Ph.D., 2016-.

28. Danie van Ophem (BGU) - M.Sc., 2017-.

29. Neomi Valdman (BGU) - M.Sc., 2017-.

30. Jiang Duo (BGU) - M.Sc., 2017-.

31. Noam Meislish (BGU) - M.Sc., 2018-.

32. Zhou Kaining (BGU) - Jointly with Jhonathan Ephrath - Ph.D., 2018-.

33. Shuo Dong (BGU) - Jointly with Aharon Fait - M.Sc., 2018-.

34. Alon Shlisser (BGU) - Jointly with Aharon Fait - M.Sc., 2018-.

35. Mor Elmakies (BGU) - Jointly with Ofer Hadar - M.Sc., 2018-.

36. Ofer Galkin (BGU) - Jointly with Nurit Agam - M.Sc., 2019-.

 c) Visiting students and post docs

1. Natalie Schroeder  (Germany), 2012.

2. Jianchu Shi (China), Jointly with Alon Ben-Gal, 2012-2013.

3. Charlotte Rapp (Germany), 2013.

4. Yosapol Harnvanichvech (Thailand), 2014.

5. Yuan Rao (China), 2014-2015.

6. Sabine Seidel (Germany), 2015.

7. Charlotte Greger (Germany), 2015.

8. Christian de Kleijn (The Netherlands), 2015.

9. Mitsuha Miyake (Japan), 2015.

10. Eric van der Tas (Belgium). 2016.

11. Parthasarathi Theivasigamani (India), 2016.

12. Daniela Jerszurki (Brazil). 2016.

13. Emil Shahnazaryan (Germany), 2017.

14. Helena Jorda Guerra (Germany), 2017.

15. Mariana Vasconcelos Barroca (Brazil), 2017.

16. Perrine Fernandez (France), 2019

Awards, Citations, Honors, ​Fellowships

Honors, Citation Awards

2003 - Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Professor Eli Rawitz Endowment scholarship.

2004 - Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Advanced studies scholarship.

2004 - The Baron De Hirsch fund - Postdoctoral fellowship.

2009 - Gerda Frieberg Chair in Agricultural Water Management.

2010 - Soil Science Society of America - The Division S-1 Early Career Award.

2011 - Ben-Gurion University of the Negev - Toronto prize for young researchers.

2016 - Associate Editor Excellence Award

(a)  Chapters in collective volumes - Conference proceedings​

1. Ben-Gal, A. and Lazorovitch, N. (2003). Beyond burying the lateral: Current issues and future 

    opportunities for subsurface drip irrigation. Prepared for Netafim Irrigation Co. Invited paper.

2. Lazarovitch, N., Šimůnek, J., M. Th. van Genuchten, and Shani, U. (2005). Numerical analysis of

    soil limiting flow from subsurface sources, In: S. Torkzaban and S. M. Hassanizadeh (eds.), Proc.

    of Workshop on HYDRUS Applications, October 19, 2005, Department of Earth Sciences, Utrecht

    University, The Netherlands, ISBN 90-39341125, 53-56, 2005.

3. Lazarovitch, N., Ben-Gal, A., and Shani U. (2005). An automated rotating lysimeter system for

   greenhouse evapotranspiration-salinity studies. In: Proceedings of the International Salinity

   Forum, Managing Saline Soils and Water: Science, Technology, and Soil Issues. April 25-27, 2005.

   Riverside, CA pp:417-420.

4.  Lazarovitch, N., Poulton, M., Furman, A. and Warrick, A.W. (2006). A user-friendly program for

   estimating subsurface wetting patterns. From research institutes to the water industry,

   International conference, Sede Boqer, Israel, Nov. 28-30, 2006.

5. Krounbi, L. and Lazarovitch, N. (2011) Soil hydraulic properties affecting root water uptake. In

   Gliński, J., Horabik, J., and Lipiec, J. (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Agrophysics, Springer. ISBN 978-90-


6.Borochov-Neori, H., Lazarovitch, N., Judeinstein, S., Patil, B. S., Holland, D. (2013) Climate and

   salinity effects on color and health promoting properties in the pomegranate (Punica granatum L.)

   fruit arils. ACS Books Symposium Series “Tropical and Subtropical Fruits: Flavors, Color, and

   Health Benefits". Chapter 3, pp 43–61. DOI: 10.1021/bk-2013-1129.ch003.

7. Raij, I., Lazarovitch, N., Ben-Gal, A., Yermiyahu, U., and Jacques, D. (2013) Accounting for

   solution composition in a plant roots active nutrient uptake model. Proceedings of the 4th

   International Conference "HYDRUS Software Applications to Subsurface Flow and Contaminant

   Transport Problems", edited by J. Šimůnek, M. Th. van Genuchten, and R. Kodešová, March 21-22,

   2013, Dept. of Soil Science and Geology, Czech University of Life Sciences, Prague, Czech

   Republic, ISBN: 978-80-213-2380-3, pp. 299-306, 2013.

8. Dabach, S., Šimůnek J., Ben-Gal A., Shi J., and Lazarovitch N. (2013) Optimization of triggered

   irrigation using a system-dependent boundary condition in HYDRUS (2D/3D). Proceedings of the \

   4th International Conference "HYDRUS Software Applications to Subsurface Flow and Contaminant

   Transport Problems", edited by J. Šimůnek, M. Th. van Genuchten, and R. Kodešová, March 21-22,

   2013, Dept. of Soil Science and Geology, Czech University of Life Sciences, Prague, Czech

   Republic, ISBN: 978-80-213-2380-3, pp. 63-68, 2013.

9.  Abramson, A., Adar, E. and Lazarovitch, N. (2013) Investigating the impact of irrigation method

   on profitability of smallholder gardening: Incorporating HYDRUS-1D into a decision support

   system. Proceedings of the 4th International Conference "HYDRUS Software Applications to

   Subsurface Flow and Contaminant Transport Problems", edited by J. Šimůnek, M. Th. van

   Genuchten, and R. Kodešová, March 21-22, 2013, Dept. of Soil Science and Geology, Czech

   University of Life Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic, ISBN: 978-80-213-2380-3, pp. 27-32, 2013

10. Lazarovitch, N. and Warrick A.W, (2013) Exercises in Soil Physics, Catena Verlag GMBH, ISBN:


(b) Refereed articles and refereed letter​s in scientific journals

1.  Ben-Gal, A., Lazarovitch, N. and Shani, U. (2004) Subsurface drip irrigation in gravel-filled cavities. Vadose Zone J., 3(4):1407-1413.

2.  Lazarovitch, N., Šimůnek, J. and Shani, U. (2005) System dependent boundary condition for water flow from subsurface source, Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J., 69(1):46-50.

3.  Lazarovitch, N., Ben-Gal, A. and Shani, U. (2006) An automated rotating lysimeter system for greenhouse evapotranspiration studies, Vadose Zone J., 5(2):801-804.

4.  Lazarovitch, N., Shani, U., Thompson, T.L. and Warrick, A.W. (2006) Soil hydraulic properties affecting discharge uniformity of subsurface drip irrigation, J. Irrig. and Drain. Eng. 132(6):531-536.

5.  Lazarovitch, N., Šimůnek, J., Ben-Gal, A. and Shani, U. (2007) Uniqueness of soil hydraulic parameters determined by a combined wooding inverse approach. DOI:10.2136/sssaj2005.0420, Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J., 71(3):860-865.

6.  Lazarovitch, N., Warrick, A.W., Furman, A. and Šimůnek, J. (2007) Subsurface water distribution from drip irrigation described by moment analyses. Vadose Zone J., 6(1):116-123.

7.  Warrick, A.W. and Lazarovitch, N. (2007) Infiltration from a strip source. Water Resour. Res., 43, W03420, doi:10.1029/2006WR004975.

8.  Warrick, A.W., Lazarovitch, N., Furman, A. and Zerihun, D. (2007) Explicit infiltration function for furrows, J. Irrig. and Drain. Eng., 133(4):307-313.

9.   Segal., E., Bradford, S.A, Shouse, P., Lazarovitch, N. and Corwin, D. (2008) Integration of hard and soft data to characterize field-scale hydraulic properties for flow and transport studies. Vadose Zone J., 7(3):878-889.

10. Dudley, M.L., Ben-Gal, A., and Lazarovitch, N. (2008). Drainage water reuse: biological, physical and technological considerations for system management. J. Environ. Qual. 37:S-25-S-35.

11. Lazarovitch, N. (2008) Comments of “Using HYDRUS-2D simulation model to evaluate wetted soil volume in subsurface drip irrigation systems." J. Irrig. and Drain. Eng., 134(6):877-878.

12. Lazarovitch, N., Warrick, A.W., Furman, A. and Zerihun, D. (2009) Subsurface water distribution from furrows described by moment analyses. J. Irrig. and Drain. Eng., 135(1):7-12.

13. Roberts, T.L., Lazarovitch, N., Warrick, A.W, and Thompson, T.L. (2009) Modeling salt accumulation with subsurface drip irrigation using HYDRUS-2D. DOI:10.2136/sssaj2008.0033. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J., 73(1):233-240.

14. Lazarovitch, N., Pollton, M., Furman, A. and Warrick, A.W. (2009) Water distribution under trickle irrigation predicted using artificial neural networks. J. Eng. Math., 64:207-218. DOI 10.1007/s10665-009-9282-2.

15. Dahan, O., Talby, R., Yechieli, Y., Adar, E., Lazarovitch, N. and Enzel, Y. (2009) In situ monitoring of water percolation and solute transport using a vadose zone monitoring system. Vadose Zone J., 8(4):1-10. DOI:10.2136/vzj2008.0134.

16. Hinnell, A. C., Lazarovitch, N. and Warrick, A.W. (2009) Explicit infiltration function for boreholes under constant head conditions, Water Resour. Res., 45, W10429, DOI:10.1029/2008WR007685.

17. Bhantana, P. and Lazarovitch, N. (2010) Evapotranspiration, crop coefficient and growth of two young pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) varieties under salt stress. Agric. Water Manage., doi:10.1016/j.agwat.2009.12.016.

18. Hinnell, A., Lazarovitch, N., Pollton, M., Furman, A. and Warrick, A.W. (2010) Neuro-Drip: Estimation of subsurface wetting patterns for drip irrigation using neural networks. Irrigation Science, DOI 10.1007/s00271-010-0214-8.

19. Sperling O. and Lazarovitch, N. (2010) Characterization of water infiltration and redistribution for two-dimensional soil profiles by moment analyses. Vadose Zone J. 9:1-7. DOI:10.2136/vzj2009.0098.

20. Shelef, O., Lazarovitch, N., Rewald, B., Golan-Goldhirsh, A. and Rachmilevitch, S. (2010) Root halotropism? salinity effects on Bassia indica Roots. Plant Biosystems, 144(2):471-478. DOI: 10.1080/11263501003732001.

21. Ityel, E., Lazarovitch, N., Silberbush, M. and Ben-Gal, A. (2011) An artificial capillary barrier to improve root zone conditions for horticultural crops: physical effects on water content. Irrig. Sci., 29:171-180. DOI: 10.1007/s00271-010-0227-3.

22. Ityel, E., Lazarovitch, N., Silberbush, M. and Ben-Gal, A. (2011) An artificial capillary barrier to improve root zone conditions for horticultural crops: response of pepper, lettuce melon and tomato. Irrig. Sci., DOI: 10.1007/s00271-011-0281-5.

23. Abramson, A., N. Becker, Y. Garb, and N. Lazarovitch (2011), Willingness to pay, borrow, and work for rural water service improvements in developing countries, Water Resour. Res., 47, W11512, doi:10.1029/2010WR010147.

24. Ityel, E., Lazarovitch, N., Silberbush, M. and Ben-Gal, A. (2012) An artificial capillary barrier to improve root-zone conditions for horticultural crops: response of pepper plants to matric head and irrigation water salinity. Agric. Water Manage. 105:13-20. DOI:10.1016/j.agwat.2011.12.016

25. Sperling, O., Shapira, O., Cohen, S., Schwartz, A. and Lazarovitch, N. (2012) Estimating sap flux densities in date palm trees using the heat dissipation method and weighing lysimeters. Tree Phys. doi:10.1093/treephys/tps070.

26. Dabach, S. Lazarovitch, N., Šimůnek, J. and Shani U. (2013) Numerical investigation of irrigation scheduling based on soil water status. Irrig. Sci., DOI: 10.1007/s00271-011- 0289-x.

27. Friedlander, L., Tal, A. and Lazarovitch, N. (2013) Technical considerations affecting adoption of drip irrigation in sub-Saharan Africa. Agric. Water Manage. 126:125-132.

28. Groenveld, T., Ben-Gal, A., Yermiyahu, U. and Lazarovitch, N. (2013) Weather determined relative sensitivity of plants to salinity: Quantification and simulation. Vadose Zone J., doi:10.2136/vzj2012.0180.

29. van Asperen, H.L., Bor, A.M.C., Sonneveld, M.P.W., Bruins, H.J. and Lazarovitch  N. (2013)Properties of anthropogenic soils in ancient run-off capturing agricultural terraces in the Central Negev desert (Israel) and related effects of biochar and ash on crop growth. Plant and Soil,doi:10.1007/s11104-013-1901-z.

30. Kool, D., Agam, N., Lazarovitch, N., Heitman, J.L., Sauer, T.J. and Ben-Gal, A. (2014) A review of approaches for evapotranspiration partitioning. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 184:56-70.

31. Ityel, E., Ben-Gal, A., Silberbush, M. and Lazarovitch, N. (2014) Increased root zone oxygen by a capillary barrier is beneficial to bell pepper irrigated with brackish water in an arid region. Agric. Water Manage., 131:108-114.

32. Sperling, O., Lazarovitch, N., Schwartz, A., Shapira, O. Effects of high salinity irrigation on growth, gas-exchange, and photoprotection in date palms (Phoenix dactylifera L., cv. Medjool).Environmental and Experimental Botany, 99:100-109.

33. Schröder, N. Lazarovitch, N., Vanderborght, J., Vereecken H., and Javaux M. (2014) Linking transpiration reduction to rhizosphere salinity using a 3D coupled soil-plant model. Plant Soil, DOI 10.1007/s11104-013-1990-8.

34. Dahan, O. Babad, A., Lazarovitch, N., Eliani, E., and Kurtzman, D. (2014) Nitrate leaching from intensive organic farms to groundwater. Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 18:1-9, doi:10.5194/hess-18-1-2014.

35. Borochov-Neori, H., Judeinstein, S., Tripler, E., Holland, D., and Lazarovitch, N. (2014) Salinity effects on color and health traits in the pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) fruit peel. International Journal of Postharvest Technology and Innovation, 4:54-68.

36. Sperling O., Shapira, O., Tripler, E., Schwartz, A., and Lazarovitch, N. (2014) A model for computing date palm water requirements as affected by salinity. Irrigation Science, DOI 10.1007/s00271-014-0433-5.

37. Abramson, A., Adar, E. and Lazarovitch, N. (2014) Exploring parameter effects on the economic outcomes of groundwater-based developments in remote, low-resource settings. Journal of Hydrology, 514:15-29, DOI: 10.1016/j.jhydrol.2014.04.002.

38. Zerihun, D., Sanchez, C.A., Lazarovitch, N., Warrick, A.W., Clemmens. A.J. and Bautista E. (2014) Modeling flow and solute transport in irrigation furrows. Irrigat. Drainage Sys. Eng., 3:124. doi:10.4172/2168-9768.1000124.

39. Kool, D., Agam, N., Šimůnek Ben-Gal, A. and Lazarovitch, N. Spatial and diurnal below canopy evaporation in a desert vineyard: Measurements and modeling. Water Resour. Res., 50, doi:10.1002/2014WR015409.

40. Abramson, A., Lazarovitch N., Massoth, S. and Adar E. (2014) Decision support system for economic assessment of water improvements in remote, low resource settings. Environmental Modelling & Software, 62:197-209.

41. Sperling O., Shapira, O., Schwartz, A. and Lazarovitch, N. (2015) Direct in vivo evidence of immense stem water exploitation in irrigated date palms. Journal of Experimental Botany, 10.1093/jxb/eru421.

42. Dabach, S., Shani, U, and Lazarovitch, N. (2015). Optimal tensiometer placement for high-frequency subsurface dripirrigation management in heterogeneous soils. Agric. Water Manage., 152:91-98.

43. Dabach, S., Shani, U., and Lazarovitch, N. (2016). The influence of water uptake on matric head variability in a drip-irrigated root zone, Soil and Tillage Research, 155:216-224.

44. Kool, D. Kustas, W.P., Ben-Gal, A., Lazarovitch, N., Heitman, J.H., Sauer, T.J. and Agam, A. (2016) Energy and evapotranspiration partitioning in a desert vineyard, Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 218–219:277–287.

45. Rao, Y., Zhao-Hui, J. and Lazarovitch, N. (2016) Investigating signal propagation and strength distribution characteristics of wireless sensor networks in date palm orchards. Computers and Electronics in Agriculture, 124:107-120.

46. Seidel, S., Rachmilevitch, S., Schütze, N. and Lazarovitch, N. (2016) Modelling the impact of drought and heat stress on common bean with two different photosynthesis model approaches. Environmental Modelling & Software, 81:111-121.

47. Aidoo, M.K., Bdolach, E., Fait, A., Lazarovitch N. and Rachmilevitch, S. (2016) Tolerance to high soil temperature in foxtail millet (Setaria italica L.) is related to shoot and root growth and metabolism. Plant Physiology and Biochemistry, 106:73-81.

48. Raij, I., Šimůnek, J., Ben-Gal, A. and Lazarovitch, N. (2016) Water flow and multicomponent solute transport in drip irrigated lysimeters. Water Resour. Res., 52, doi:10.1002/2016WR018930.

49. Kool, D., Heitman J.L., Lazarovitch N., Agam N. , Sauer T. , and Ben-Gal A. (2016) In situ thermistor calibration for improved measurement of soil temperature gradients. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J., 80:1514-1519.

50. Pal, S., Zhao, J., Khan, A., Yadav, N.S., Batushansky, A., Barak, S., Rewald, B., Fait, A., Lazarovitch, N., and Rachmilevitch, S. (2016) Paclobutrazol induces tolerance in tomato to deficit irrigation through diversified effects on plant morphology, physiology and metabolism. Scientific Reports, 6:3932, DOI: 10.1038/srep39321.

51. Hochberg, U., Herrera, J.C., Degu, A., Castellarin, S.D., Peterlunger, E., Alberti,  G., and  Lazarovitch, N. (2016) Evaporative demand determines the relative transpirational sensitivity of deficit irrigated grapevines. Irrigation Science, DOI 10.1007/s00271-016-0518-4.

52. Trifonov, P. Lazarovitch, N. and Arye G. (2017). Increasing water productivity in arid regions using low-discharge drip irrigation: a case study on potato growth. Irrig Sci. 35:287–295. doi:10.1007/s00271-017-0538-8.

53. Aidoo, M. Kwame, Sherman, T., Lazarovitch N., Fait, A. and Rachmilevitch, S.  (2017) A bell pepper cultivar tolerant to chilling enhanced nitrogen allocation and stress-related metabolite accumulation in the roots in response to low root zone temperature. Physiologia Plantarum, doi:10.1111/ppl.12584.

54. Zhen, J., Tripler, E., Peng, X., and Lazarovitch, N. (2017). A wireless device for continuous frond elongation measurement. Computers and electronics in agriculture, 140:1–7. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.compag.2017.05.011

55. Herrera, J.C.,  Hochberg, U., Degu, A.,  Sabbatini, P., Lazarovitch, N., Castellarin, S.D.,  Fait, A., Alberti, G., and Peterlunger, E. (2017). Grape metabolic response to post-veraison water deficit is affected by inter-season weather variability. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 65:5868-5878. doi: 10.1021/acs.jafc.7b01466.

56. Zhao, J., Rewald, B., Lazarovitch, N., Rachmilevitch, S. (2017). Plasticity of biomass allometry and root traits of two tomato cultivars under deficit irrigation × chemically-induced drought hardening by Paclobutrazol. Irrigation Science, 35:501-504.

57. Raij, I., Ben-Gal, A., Lazarovitch, N. (2018). Soil and irrigation heterogeneity effects on drainage amount and concentration in lysimeters: a numerical study. Agric. Water Manage., 195:1–10. 

58. Hartmann, A., Šimůnek, J., Aidoo, M.K., Seidel, S. and Lazarovitch, N. (2018). Implementation and application of a root growth module in HYDRUS. Vadose Zone J. 17:170040. doi:10.2136/vzj2017.02.0040.

59. Lazarovitch, N., Vanderborght, J., Jin, Y. and van Genuchten M. Th. (2018). The root zone: Soil physics and beyond. Vadose Zone J. 17:180002. doi:10.2136/vzj2018.01.0002

60. Jorda, H., Perelman, A., Lazarovitch, N. and Vanderborght, J. (2018). Exploring osmotic stress and differences between soil-root interface and bulk salinities. Vadose Zone J. 17:170029. doi: 10.2136/vzj2017.01.0029.

61. Aidoo, M. K., Sherman, T., Ephrath, J., Fait, A., Rachmilevitch, S. and Lazarovitch N. (2018). Grafting as a method to increase the tolerance response of bell pepper to extreme temperatures. Vadose Zone J. 17:170006. doi:10.2136/vzj2017.01.0006.

62. Cohen, B., Lazarovitch, N. and Gilron, J. (2018). Upgrading groundwater for irrigation using monovalent selective electrodialysis. Desalination. 431:126-139. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.desal.2017.10.030.

63. Omondi, J.O., Lazarovitch, N., Rachmilevitch, S., Boahen, S., Ntawuruhunga, P., Sokolowski, E. and Yermiyahu, U. (2018). Nutrient use efficiency and harvest index of cassava decline as fertigation solution concentration increases. Journal of Plant Nutrition and Soil Science. 181:644-654. DOI: 10.1002/jpln.201700455.

64. Trifonov, P., Lazarovitch N. and Arye, G. (2018). Water and nitrogen productivity of potato growth in desert areas under low-discharge drip irrigation. Water, 10(8), 970; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10080970.

65. Zhen, J., Pevzner, S., Tripler, E. and Lazarovitch, N. (2019). Impact of fruiting on gas exchange, water fluxes and frond development in irrigated date palms. Scientia Horticulturae, 244:234-241.

66. Groenveld, T., Kohn, Y., Gross, A. and Lazarovitch N. (2019). Optimization of nitrogen use efficiency by means of fertigation management in an integrated aquaculture-agriculture system. Journal of Cleaner Production, 212:401-408.

67. Aidoo, M.K., Sherman, T., Lazarovitch, N., Fait A. and Rachmilevich, S. (2019). Physiology and metabolism of grafted bell pepper in response to low root-zone temperature. Functional Plant Biology. 46:339-349. https://doi.org/10.1071/FP18206.

68. Perelman, A., Jorda, H. Vanderborght, J. and Lazarovitch, N. (2019). Tracing root-felt sodium concentrations under different transpiration rates and salinity levels (Plant and soil). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11104-019-03959-5.

69. Degu, A., Hochberg, U., Wong D.C.J., Alberti, J., Lazarovitch, N., Peterlunger, E., Castellarin, S.D.,  Herrera, J.C. and Fait, A. (2019). Swift metabolite changes and leaf shedding are milestones in the acclimation process of grapevine under prolonged water stress. BMC Plant Biology, 19:69. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12870-019-1652-y

70. Seidel, S.J., Barfus, K, Gaiser, T., Nguyen T.H., and Lazarovitch, N. (2019). The influence of climate variability, soil conditions and sowing date on simulation-based crop coefficient curves and irrigation water demand (Agricultural water management).

71. Bughici, T., Lazarovitch, N., Fredj, E. and Tas, E. (2019). Evaluation and bias correction of WRF model forecast of potential evapotranspiration and precipitation for crop irrigation. Journal of Hydrometeorology, https://doi.org/10.1175/JHM-D-18-0160.1.

72. Omondi, J.O., Lazarovitch, N., Rachmilevitch, S., Yermiyahu, U. and Sperling, O. (2019). High nitrogen availability limits photosynthesis and compromises carbohydrate allocation to storage in roots of Manihot esculenta Crantz (2019). Front. Plant Sci. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2019.01041.

73. Ephrath, J.E.PI, Klein, T.C, Sharp R.E.C and Lazarovitch, N.PI (2020) Exposing the hidden half: Root research at the forefront of science. Plant and soil. 10.1007/s11104-019-04417-y    

Research Grants (* principal i​nvestigator)

 1. 2008-2009: JCA charitable foundation - Lazarovitch, N.*, Effect of combined drought and salinity stresses on transpiration, growth, yield and quality of pomegranate. Two years, $26,000.

2. 2008-2010: Israel Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (Chief Scientist) - Lazarovitch, N.*, Root water uptake under deficit irrigation: Model calibration and comparison. Three Years, $85,000.

3. 2008-2009: Netafim TM - Lazarovitch, N.*, Increasing the probability of germination and seedling emergence under subsurface drip irrigation. Two years, $17,000.

4. 2009-2011: Israel Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (Chief Scientist) - Ben-Gal A.*, Lazarovitch, N., Yermiyahu, U., Blending of desalinated and saline water for efficient agricultural and responsible environmental use. Three Years, $128,000.

5. 2009-2011: Israeli Water Authority - Dahan, O.*, Lazarovitch, N.* and Kurtzman, D., Direct influence of agricultural activities in greenhouses on groundwater quality. Three Years, $180,000.

6. 2009-2011: Israel Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (Chief Scientist) - Shapira O.*, Lazarovitch, N., Mualem, Y., Tripler, E., Ben-Gal, A. and Schwartz, A., Evaluating the relationship between water status and production of date palm trees. Three Years, $97,000.

7. 2009-2011: Koshland foundation - Lazarovitch, N.* and Dahan, O., Assessing the direct influence of agricultural activities on groundwater quality in the Arava. Two Years, $45,000.

8. 2009-2010: Syngenta - Rachmilevitch S.* and Lazarovitch, N.*, The response of thiamethoxam on plant growth under pest free conditions. One Year, $32,000.

9. 2010-2011: JCA charitable foundation - Offenbach. R., Lazarovitch, N.*, Yermiyahu, U. and Ben-Gal A., Blending of Desalinated water for efficient agricultural and responsible environmental irrigation in the Arava region. Two years, $20,000.

10. 2011-2012: Goldinger fund - Lazarovitch, N.* and Fait, A., Effect of salinity stress on transpiration, growth, yield and quality of sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum). Two years, $50,000.

11. 2011-2014: Israel Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (Chief Scientist) – Arye, G., Lazarovitch, N. and Fine, P., Increasing water and fertilizers use efficiency in potato using low discharge drip irrigation. Three Years, $118,000.

12. 2011-2014: Syngenta - Lazarovitch, N.*, Rachmilevitch S.* Fait A., Non-related pesticidal effects of Syngenta compounds on plant metabolism and growth. Three Years, $459,000.

13. 2012: JCA charitable foundation - Lazarovitch, N.* and Shapira, O., Irrigation scheduling of date palm trees using heat dissipation sensors. One Year, $20,000.

14. 2012-1014: Renewable Energy Israeli Center for Research Excellence (I-CORE) – Lazarovitch, N. Two Years, $67,000.

15. 2012-2013: Rosenzweig-Coopersmith Foundation - Lazarovitch, N.* and Shapira, O. Water relations in date palm trees: from water sensing to irrigation scheduling. Two years, $50,000.

16. 2013: Goldinger fund - Lazarovitch, N.* The influence of dripper discharge rate on the yield and quality of Bell Peppers (Capsicum annuum) irrigated with saline water. One year, $25,000.

17. 2013: Rubanenko fund - Lazarovitch, N.* and Rachmilevitch S.* Examining the agricultural potential of a novel newly designed aeroponics system. One year, $20,000.

18. 2014-2016: Syngenta - Lazarovitch, N.*, Rachmilevitch S.* Development of a high throughput phenotyping system for Pepper cold tolerant varieties. Three Years, $150,000.

19. 2014-2015: Koshland foundation - Lazarovitch, N.* and Gilron, J. Optimization of desalination water quality for agricultural use. One Year, $25,000.

20. 2014-2016: Chief Scientist of the Ministry of Economy - Lazarovitch, N.* and Fait, A.*,  Intelligent irrigation for grape quality. Two Years, $362,000.

21. 2015-2017: GIF - Lazarovitch, N.* and Jan Vanderborght. Water flow and solute transport in the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum: Upscaling from rhizosphere to root zone. Three Years, $232,000.

22. 2015-2018: Israel Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (Chief Scientist) Lazarovitch, N.* and Tas, E., Irrigation scheduling for row crops using potential evapotranspiration and rain forecasting. Three Years, $110,000. 

23. 2016-2022: Israel Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (Eugene Kandel Knowledge centers), Lazarovitch, N.* Moshelion, M., Ephrath, J.E., Agam, N., Dahan, O., Bel, G., Karnieli, A., Tas, E., Kan, I., and Shenkar, E. A decision support system for optimizing inputs regime based on monitoring the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum. Three Years, $1,000,000. As part of the Root of the Matter - The root zone knowledge center for leveraging modern agriculture.

24. 2016: Goldinger fund - Lazarovitch, N.* Efficient use of water and nutrients by means of integrated agriculture, One Year, 20,000$.

25. 2016-2017: Koshland foundation - Lazarovitch, N.* and Gross, A. Nutrient transformations and energy balance in multi-trophic aquaponic unit with various levels of water recycling.  Two Years, 25,000$.

Synopsis of res​earch

My studies aim for better understanding of water flow and solute transport in the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum as a crucial factor for establishing optimal protocols for farmers and decision makers. The main approach to achieve the research objectives is to raise agricultural water use efficiency using optimal irrigation and fertigation scheduling. This approach is supported by modeling (numerical and analytical), measurement and interpretation of water flow and solute transport in the soil-plant-atmosphere system.

My interest in agriculture started 28 years ago in Kibbutz Kisufim which is located in the western Negev desert. During this period I was responsible for irrigating large cotton fields. Shortly after this, I started my studies in the Faculty of Agriculture in the Hebrew University. My ambition at that stage was to have good background in soil and water sciences. I studied basic courses like physics, mathematics, chemistry, plant biology and many other courses regarding soil, plant and atmosphere. After finishing my B.Sc., I continued directly to my M.Sc. under the supervision of Prof. Uri Shani studying water flow from subsurface sources. This research was expanded into my Ph.D. (under the supervision of Prof. Uri Shani) in which plants and the atmospheric demand for water were coupled with the water source-soil system. The Ph.D. work was summarized in four manuscripts about building new experimental and quantitative techniques. Throughout the M.Sc. and Ph.D. I was a teaching assistant in several courses ranging from basic sciences as physics or physical chemistry to more professional courses regarding irrigation (Full list is in the employment history section). With these robust foundations that were established during ten years at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, I continued for my post doctoral studies at the University of Arizona with the supervising of Prof. Arthur Warrick. There I improved my modeling (analytical and numerical) skills of water flow from multidimensional sources. This work produced five more papers and numerous posters and oral presentations in various meetings. After these two years in the University of Arizona I started my tenure track position in Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.

Currently, my research activities focus on increasing agricultural productivity while maintaining sustainable environment. The orientation of my research is towards arid and semi-arid rural regions in general and the Israeli Negev in particular. The research involves low-input agro-techniques of furrow irrigation on the one hand, and greenhouse-protected crops of high value irrigated with high frequency drip irrigation, using the most advanced technologies on the other hand. The overall goal is to use environmental conditions typical to arid conditions (high solar radiation, low humidity, extreme day and night temperatures, wide open lands, marginal water) to improve the welfare of people live in arid environments, in both developing and developed countries.

Several facilities were built since I started my position at the Ben-Gurion University to enable my research activities. The first novel tool is an automated device that obtains accurate water and solute balances under uniform growing conditions for a large number of plants. The second is an orchard of eighty pomegranate trees that were planted in lysimeters. Half of these lysimeters are located on scales and facilitate water and salinity balances estimation. The last facility was built in the central Arava R&D in Zohar station. In this facility there are twelve large lysimeters in a greenhouse and plots that receive the same treatments as in the lysimeters. These lysimeters are also heavily equipped with water content, salinity, matric head, temperature and oxygen sensors. This facility enables semi commercial experiments with practices that are similar to regular farms.

Part of my time is devoted to improve the ability to estimate soil hydraulic properties in-situ or in the laboratory. Estimating soil hydraulic properties is essential for proper understanding and evaluation of the physical and chemical processes involved in water flow, dissolved salts and pollutants within the vadose zone. Special attention is also given for the sustainability of the agricultural activities. Investigating the transport of agricultural contaminants below the root zone and manipulating the fertigation scheduling could minimize the leachete of pollutants into ground water.