Location: Chemistry Research Unit
Title: Impact of elevated carbon dioxide and temperature on fresh weight and sugar yield of sugar cane Authors
Submitted to: Caribbean Food Crops Society Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: July 13, 2008
Publication Date: July 1, 2009
Citation: Allen Jr, L.H., Vu, J.C., Anderson, J.C., Ray, J.D. 2009. Impact of elevated carbon dioxide and temperature on fresh weight and sugar yield of sugar cane. Caribbean Food Crops Society Proceedings. 44(2):267-278. Technical Abstract: Seed-piece shoots of four cultivars of sugar cane were transplanted on March 21, 1977 to containers 1.2 m long X 0.6 m wide X 0.6 m deep) in four temperature zones of two temperature-gradient greenhouses at Gainesville, Florida. Each temperature zone had 8 containers. Four containers of each zone had organic soil and four containers had mineral soil (Arredondo fine sand). Within each type of soil, two containers had water-table depth maintained at 0.2 m and two were re-watered frequently. High soil fertility was maintained. Each container initially had two plants of CP72-2086, CP73-1547, CP88-1508 and one plant of CP80-1827. One greenhouse was maintained at ambient carbon dioxide concentration (daytime 360 ppm, mol ratio basis) and the other was enriched by +350 ppm (daytime 710 ppm). Temperatures were maintained continuously at baseline (slightly above ambient at Gainesville) and at +1.5, +3.0, and +4.5 degrees C above baseline. Fresh weight, dry weight, juice volume, and juice sucrose concentration were measured at midsummer and December harvests in 1997, 1998, 1999, and 2000. Although sugar cane is a C4 photosynthetic pathway plant, total fresh weights, dry weights, juice volume, and sucrose contents were higher in plants exposed to elevated carbon dioxide. Temperature in the range of exposures made little difference in plant growth and yield. Yields were greater when water-tables were maintained at 20 cm. In conclusion, rising atmospheric carbon dioxide will be expected to cause an increase in sugar yield.