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Recovery dynamics of rainfed winter wheat after livestock grazing 2. Light interception, radiation-use efficiency and dry-matter partitioning
journal contributionposted on 2023-05-17, 17:51 authored by Matthew HarrisonMatthew Harrison, Evans, JR, Dove, H, Moore, AD
Grazing of cereal crops reduces canopy light interception and could potentially reduce biomass production and grain yields. Alternatively, defoliation after canopy closure may increase light penetration and enhance radiation-use efficiency (RUE, shoot dry matter produced per unit light intercepted). Changes in dry matter partitioning following grazing may also ameliorate grain yield penalties. Experiments with rainfed winter wheat were conducted near Canberra, Australia, to investigate the effect of different intensity or duration of grazing on two cultivars. Grazing reduced leaf area index (LAI), light interception and growth rates by up to 90% but did not affect overall RUE. Although grazing caused significant reductions in cumulative light interception and total dry matter accumulation, it did not affect grain yields because grazed crops had delayed phenological development, allowing increased partitioning of shoot dry matter to spikes. Grazing reduced stem dry matter accumulation and consequently decreased the amount of stem assimilate available for retranslocation to kernels by up to 75%. However, by delaying crop ontogeny, grazing prolonged green area duration after anthesis and thereby increased the supply of assimilates from current photosynthesis to developing kernels, mitigating potential yield penalties caused by defoliation. Â© CSIRO 2011.
Publication titleCrop and Pasture Science
Department/SchoolTasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA)
Place of publicationAustralia
Rights statementJournal compilation copyright 2011? CSIRO