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An assessment of the effects of climate change on horticulture

Dixon, G. R., Collier, R. H. and Bhattacharya, I. (2014) An assessment of the effects of climate change on horticulture. In: Dixon, G. R. and Aldous, D. E. (eds.) Horticulture: plants for people and places. Springer Science + Business Media, Dordrecht, The Netherlands, pp. 817-857. ISBN 9789401785808

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1007/978-94-017-8581-5_10


Horticulture may be defined as the intensive cultivation and harvesting of plants for financial, environmental and social profit. Evidence for the occurrence of climate change more generally and reasons why this process is happening with such rapidity are discussed. These changes are then considered in terms of the effects which might alter the options for worldwide intensive horticultural cultivation of plants and its interactions with other organisms. Potentially changing climates will have considerable impact upon horticultural processes and productivity across the globe . Climate change will alter the growth patterns and capabilities for flowering and fruiting of many perennial and annual horticultural plants. In some regions perennial fruit crops are likely to experience substantial difficulties because of altered seasonal conditions affecting dormancy, acclimation and subsequent flowering and fruiting. Elsewhere these crops may benefit from the effects of climate change as a result of reduced cold damage and increased length of the growing season. There will be considerable effects for aerial and edaphic microbes invertebrate and vertebrate animals which have benign and pathogenic interactions with horticultural plants. Microbial activity and as a consequence soil fertility may alter. New pests and pathogens may become prevalent and damaging in areas where the climate previously excluded their activity. Vital resources such as water and nutrients may become scarce in some regions reducing opportunities for growing horticultural crops. Wind and windiness are significant factors governing the success of horticultural plants and the scale of their impacts may change as climate alters. Damaging winds could limit crop growing in areas where previously it flourished. Forms of macro- and micro-landscaping will change as the spectrum of plants which can be cultivated alters and the availability of resources and their cost changes driven by scarcities brought about by climate change. The horticultural economy of India as it may be affected by climate change is described as an individual example in a detailed study.

Item Type:Book or Report Section
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Department of Crop Science
ID Code:56769
Publisher:Springer Science + Business Media

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