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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: PREDICTING INTERACTIVE EFFECTS OF CO2, TEMPERATURE, AND OTHER ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS ON AGRICULTUAL PRODUCTIVITIY

Location: Plant Physiology and Genetics Research

Title: Book Review of the PHYSIOLOGY OF CROP YIELD by R. Hay and J. Porter

Author
item WHITE, JEFFREY

Submitted to: Crop Science
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: May 29, 2007
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: The Physiology of Crop Yield by R. Hay and J. Porter (2006; Blackwell Publishing) represents a complete rewrite of An Introduction to the Physiology of Crop Yield, by R. Hay and A.J. Walker (1989). The new text emphasizes quantitative description of plant development and growth, working from a simple equation that states that grain yield is the product of four factors: the solar radiation (sunlight) received by crop, how effectively the crop intercepts the radiation and then coverts the energy to dry matter, and finally, what portion of the total dry matter is available as the harvestable product. Topics covered include how photoperiod and temperature influence the timing of flower and overall lifecycle of a crop, how leaves grow and are assembled to create the canopy or overall crop structure, how photosynthesis uses light energy to convert carbon dioxide to the carbohydrates used to build plants, and how to integrate our understanding of diverse physiological processes in a crop into quantitative models. Examples are drawn largely from temperate zone annual crops, but the basic principles have universal applicability. The text is intended as an upper level undergraduate text and should fill this role very well. The authors note that the agricultural community needs to develop a new generation of crop scientists, and this text provides a valuable tool toward that goal.

Technical Abstract: The Physiology of Crop Yield by R. Hay and J. Porter (2006; Blackwell Publishing) represents a complete rewrite of An Introduction to the Physiology of Crop Yield, by R. Hay and A.J. Walker (1989). The new text emphasizes quantitative description of plant development and growth, working from a simple equation that states that grain yield is the product of four factors: the solar radiation (sunlight) received by crop, how effectively the crop intercepts the radiation and then coverts the energy to dry matter, and finally, what portion of the total dry matter is available as the harvestable product. Topics covered include how photoperiod and temperature influence the timing of flower and overall lifecycle of a crop, how leaves grow and are assembled to create the canopy or overall crop structure, how photosynthesis uses light energy to convert carbon dioxide to the carbohydrates used to build plants, and how to integrate our understanding of diverse physiological processes in a crop into quantitative models. Examples are drawn largely from temperate zone annual crops, but the basic principles have universal applicability. The text is intended as an upper level undergraduate text and should fill this role very well. The authors note that the agricultural community needs to develop a new generation of crop scientists, and this text provides a valuable tool toward that goal.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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