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Increased yield stability of field-grown winter barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) varietal mixtures through ecological processes.

Creissen HE, Jorgensen TH, Brown JK - Crop Prot. (2016)

Bottom Line: There was compensation through competitive release because the most competitive variety overyielded in mixtures thereby compensating for less competitive varieties.Facilitation was also identified as an important ecological process within mixtures by reducing lodging.They may confer enhanced resilience to environmental stresses and thus be a desirable component of future cropping systems for sustainable arable farming.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Crop Genetics Department, John Innes Centre, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, Norfolk, NR4 7UH, UK; School of Biological Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, Norfolk, NR4 7TJ, UK.

ABSTRACT

Crop variety mixtures have the potential to increase yield stability in highly variable and unpredictable environments, yet knowledge of the specific mechanisms underlying enhanced yield stability has been limited. Ecological processes in genetically diverse crops were investigated by conducting field trials with winter barley varieties (Hordeum vulgare), grown as monocultures or as three-way mixtures in fungicide treated and untreated plots at three sites. Mixtures achieved yields comparable to the best performing monocultures whilst enhancing yield stability despite being subject to multiple predicted and unpredicted abiotic and biotic stresses including brown rust (Puccinia hordei) and lodging. There was compensation through competitive release because the most competitive variety overyielded in mixtures thereby compensating for less competitive varieties. Facilitation was also identified as an important ecological process within mixtures by reducing lodging. This study indicates that crop varietal mixtures have the capacity to stabilise productivity even when environmental conditions and stresses are not predicted in advance. Varietal mixtures provide a means of increasing crop genetic diversity without the need for extensive breeding efforts. They may confer enhanced resilience to environmental stresses and thus be a desirable component of future cropping systems for sustainable arable farming.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Mean green leaf area (%) on the flag and second leaves diseased by brown rust. Disease scores are for individual plants grown in monoculture or three-way mixture and naturally infected under field conditions. Specific data for individual sites is not shown because there was no significant interaction between site and cultivation (mixture/monoculture). N = 1680. Error bars show 95% confidence interval of means.
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fig4: Mean green leaf area (%) on the flag and second leaves diseased by brown rust. Disease scores are for individual plants grown in monoculture or three-way mixture and naturally infected under field conditions. Specific data for individual sites is not shown because there was no significant interaction between site and cultivation (mixture/monoculture). N = 1680. Error bars show 95% confidence interval of means.

Mentions: Brown rust scores, recorded as the % leaf area infected with the fungus, were heavily dependent upon interactions between variety and cultivation (mixture/monoculture) (Fig. 4; Table A4, F3,15 = 4.31, P = 0.006). Disease levels were consistently reduced for Winsome when grown in mixture compared to monoculture, indicating a positive effect of mixtures in reducing disease severity for susceptible varieties. There was no significant difference in disease levels between the different mixtures because the most susceptible varieties, Winsome and Element, were present in both mixtures (data not shown).


Increased yield stability of field-grown winter barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) varietal mixtures through ecological processes.

Creissen HE, Jorgensen TH, Brown JK - Crop Prot. (2016)

Mean green leaf area (%) on the flag and second leaves diseased by brown rust. Disease scores are for individual plants grown in monoculture or three-way mixture and naturally infected under field conditions. Specific data for individual sites is not shown because there was no significant interaction between site and cultivation (mixture/monoculture). N = 1680. Error bars show 95% confidence interval of means.
© Copyright Policy - CC BY
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4862440&req=5

fig4: Mean green leaf area (%) on the flag and second leaves diseased by brown rust. Disease scores are for individual plants grown in monoculture or three-way mixture and naturally infected under field conditions. Specific data for individual sites is not shown because there was no significant interaction between site and cultivation (mixture/monoculture). N = 1680. Error bars show 95% confidence interval of means.
Mentions: Brown rust scores, recorded as the % leaf area infected with the fungus, were heavily dependent upon interactions between variety and cultivation (mixture/monoculture) (Fig. 4; Table A4, F3,15 = 4.31, P = 0.006). Disease levels were consistently reduced for Winsome when grown in mixture compared to monoculture, indicating a positive effect of mixtures in reducing disease severity for susceptible varieties. There was no significant difference in disease levels between the different mixtures because the most susceptible varieties, Winsome and Element, were present in both mixtures (data not shown).

Bottom Line: There was compensation through competitive release because the most competitive variety overyielded in mixtures thereby compensating for less competitive varieties.Facilitation was also identified as an important ecological process within mixtures by reducing lodging.They may confer enhanced resilience to environmental stresses and thus be a desirable component of future cropping systems for sustainable arable farming.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Crop Genetics Department, John Innes Centre, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, Norfolk, NR4 7UH, UK; School of Biological Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, Norfolk, NR4 7TJ, UK.

ABSTRACT

Crop variety mixtures have the potential to increase yield stability in highly variable and unpredictable environments, yet knowledge of the specific mechanisms underlying enhanced yield stability has been limited. Ecological processes in genetically diverse crops were investigated by conducting field trials with winter barley varieties (Hordeum vulgare), grown as monocultures or as three-way mixtures in fungicide treated and untreated plots at three sites. Mixtures achieved yields comparable to the best performing monocultures whilst enhancing yield stability despite being subject to multiple predicted and unpredicted abiotic and biotic stresses including brown rust (Puccinia hordei) and lodging. There was compensation through competitive release because the most competitive variety overyielded in mixtures thereby compensating for less competitive varieties. Facilitation was also identified as an important ecological process within mixtures by reducing lodging. This study indicates that crop varietal mixtures have the capacity to stabilise productivity even when environmental conditions and stresses are not predicted in advance. Varietal mixtures provide a means of increasing crop genetic diversity without the need for extensive breeding efforts. They may confer enhanced resilience to environmental stresses and thus be a desirable component of future cropping systems for sustainable arable farming.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus