|HOLADAY, SCOTT - Texas Tech University|
Submitted to: Journal of Cotton Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/5/2016
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Exposure to low temperatures (day and night) during the growing season is a major limitation to cotton production in a number of environments, including the Texas High Plains. This paper provides an in-depth review of our current understanding of the impact on low temperature on photosynthesis in cotton and the impact on yield. Additionally, we provide new data from early and late planting date trials and an analysis of seasonal temperature variation on the High Plains as it relates to potential expansion of current planting dates.
Technical Abstract: Environmental stress is an inescapable reality for most plants growing in natural settings. Conditions of sub or supra-optimal temperatures, water deficit, water logging, salinity, and pollution can have dramatic effects on plant growth and development, and in agricultural settings, yield. In cotton, yield is a product of the number of mature bolls produced in a given area and the amount of cotton produced by each boll. Though cotton is among the most stress tolerant crop plants, sub-optimal environmental conditions limit the yields and quality of fiber and seed. The most significant effects, related to yield, of abiotic stress are on fertilization, boll retention, and boll filling. Maintenance of photoassimilate supply during fruit development is critical in achieving high yields in cotton. Because photosynthesis is the driving force behind plant productivity, although not the only factor that determines yield, plants have developed numerous mechanisms that serve to protect the photosynthetic apparatus during stressful conditions. Cotton is produced across a wide-range of environments and management conditions, from hot and humid sub-tropical to semi-arid environments. While production is limited by varying environmental conditions across these environments, it is clear that the physiological resiliance to abiotic stress is considerable. We present here a review of our understanding of low temperature limitations to photosynthesis and the impact on productivity. Additionally, we use the High Plains region of Texas as a case study to highlight potential key developmental aspects of low temperature stress on yield.