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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Corvallis, Oregon » Forage Seed and Cereal Research Unit » Research » Research Project #445112

Research Project: Advancing Our Predictive Understanding of Hemp Through Crop Modeling

Location: Forage Seed and Cereal Research Unit

Project Number: 2072-21000-056-005-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Aug 1, 2023
End Date: Oct 31, 2024

This project will develop and implement crop models for hemp, integrating them with existing simulation tools that include coupled water, energy, carbon, and/or nitrogen balances as controls on crop growth. Models will be used to evaluate cropping sequences, rotation systems, and climate-smart practices effects on irrigated and dryland production responses on crop biomass, yield, soil health characteristics, and carbon sequestration. Scales of investigation will range from plots to regional simulations. Remote sensing workflows will also be considered to evaluate current cropping rotations and to estimate management practices.

1. Assemble plot- and field-scale data for hemp across CONUS to describe hemp phenology including key indicators and controls on life stages, C:N:P ratios in major plant tissues (roots, stalk/stem, leaves). 2. Parameterize hemp in a pre-existing crop model that simulated coupled carbon, energy, water, and nitrogen cycles and validate model performance using pre-existing plot scale data. 3. Add phenology for crop types commonly rotated with hemp to a pre-existing crop model. 4. Simulate field-scale outcomes across a range of landscape positions, climates, and management regimes (fertilization, rotation, irrigation) in the PNW to assess field-scale outcomes including biomass production, changes to net ecosystem exchange and soil carbon pools, and runoff or leaching of water and nitrogen. 5. Employ remote sensing to assess the extent and rotations of hemp in the PNW, and estimate key controls on suitably for hemp as part of crop rotations. 6. Develop high spatial resolution (sub-field scale) data sets to enable crop modeling at the sub-field scale across Oregon and/or the PNW. 7. Simulate rotations integrating hemp across the state/region (high resolution) or CONUS (5-km to 5-min resolution) to assess the national-scale potential benefits (biomass, carbon balance, runoff) of hemp as part of cropping system rotations. 8. Assess the robustness of hemp crop performance in response to future climates.