Tagged: modelling






Computing modelling and photosynthesis

One way to improve crop yields is to improve photosynthesis, but how can scientists do this? Alexandrina Stirbet and colleagues review mathematical modelling as a tool for studying photosynthesis, as part of a special issue on Functional-Structural Plant Modelling in Annals of Botany. “Oxygenic photosynthesis is a very important process, not only because it is the source of our food, fibre and many useful substances, but also because almost all life on the Earth depends on it, either directly or indirectly,” write Stirbet and colleagues. “Plants, algae and cyanobacteria are oxygenic photosynthetizers that use light energy to generate organic molecules...

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A stylised graph

Relationship between duration of cell differentiation and xylem traits

Secondary growth is a process related to the formation of new cells that increase in size and wall thickness during xylogenesis. Temporal dynamics of wood formation influence cell traits, in turn affecting cell patterns across the tree ring. Buttò et al. verified the hypothesis that cell diameter and cell wall thickness are positively correlated with the duration of their differentiation phases. At all sites, larger cell diameters and cell wall thicknesses were observed in cells that experienced a longer period of differentiation. The relationship was a non-linear, decreasing trend that occasionally resulted in a clear asymptote. Overall, secondary wall deposition...

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Crop Canopy

A software package to simulate daily field crop canopy photosynthesis

How can we improve crops in the future? One method would be to improve the photosynthesis process in crops, to increase productivity from the same plants. However, there isn’t a lot of research connecting leaf-level photosynthetic manipulation and crop performance. A new software package developed by Wu et al. produces a model of diurnal crop canopy photosynthesis for well-watered conditions using biochemical models of C3 and C4 photosynthesis scaled to the canopy level using the sun–shade leaves representation of the canopy. The model simulated the expected responses in diurnal (sunrise to sunset) canopy photosynthesis and daily crop biomass accumulation to...

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A root system

Seeking stable traits to characterize the root system architecture

The shape of the root system creates a lot of the context for plants to interact with a source of nutrients, water and pathogens. If you can characterize root system architecture, then you can investigate root functions and interactions. However, examining this is difficult, partly for the obvious reason that soil is difficult to see through, but also because root systems are plastic (in this meaning, easily changeable and reformed). To examine root systems, Loïc Pagès and Jocelyne Kervella examined roots of 60 species growing in natura and measured them against five traits: extreme tip diameters (Dmin and Dmax) relative...

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