Scientists at the University of Minnesota are teaming up with a global team to study the complex effects of climate change on winter crops.
Winter hardiness may seem like a welcome change for some farmers because the change in temperature can reduce the dry stress on the plants and create the most favorable conditions for growth. silver plants and winter cover plants. However, when looking at the change in climate from a cross-seasonal perspective and calculating the fall of the iceberg, the researchers found that the overall picture was not large.
Reducing frost can increase the likelihood of winter crops drying out and increase the risk of agricultural drought.
In a new study published in Nature Climate ChangeZhenong Jin, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering at the University of Minnesota, led a global team researching the effects that can be associated with hot and cold winters. with lower ice temperatures, using winter wheat (the largest winter crop in the US) as an example.
“While the effects of climate change on agriculture are beginning to be understood, the effects of it are not widely known for large winter crops such as winter wheat,” Jin said. .
The researchers used a regression panel, a powerful statistical method for looking at recent observations, to compare the difference between winter grain yield and environmental factors. These included the cold season which included snowy days, growing days, rain and snow during the growing season and partial snow cover during winter days.
The researchers found:
- From 1999-2019, the snow cover was weakened to disappear due to ice stress by 22%.
- The hypotheses suggest that snow cover could be eliminated in the future by about a third of the benefit of ice reduction.
“Our research has shown that winter hardiness with less snow cover, more often than not, plants are exposed to warmer conditions compared to the loss of moisture. winter-hardy, it can produce a large number of winter crops, ”said Peng Zhu, Ph.D. ., A researcher from the Climate and Environment Science Laboratory of the Pierre Simon Laplace Institute, who led this research.
This research will help farmers understand the complex trade -offs between warming, frost reduction and pesticides when developing cultivars. expert in the weather.
These results also demonstrate the need to improve the nature of frost -related processes in models to better evaluate the effects of climate change and the potential for climate change. plant systems.
“It’s important to note that in some cultivated systems the importance is appreciated, as it helps farmers control pests and diseases and removes frost or frost produced by the plant. farmers to increase soil moisture, ”Jin said. “Once the data is available, future studies may need to quantify the impact of snow on pests and diseases to fully understand the nature of the changes in the future. the ice bag for the cutting system. “
Other members of the University of Minnesota research team are Taegon Kim and Chenxi Lin from the Jin team and David Mulla from the Department of Lands, Water, and Climate.
Warm winters can slow down the survival of wildflowers
Peng Zhu et al, Significant benefits of snowpack insulation and ice insulation for winter grain production, Nature Climate Change (2022). DOI: 10.1038 / s41558-022-01327-3
Presented by the University of Minnesota
Directions: Critical benefits of snow pack for winter (2022, April 7) Retrieved 7 April 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-04-critical-benefits-snowpack -winter-wheat.html
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