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Agronomy 2017, 7(2), 35; doi:10.3390/agronomy7020035

Agro-Ecology for Potential Adaptation of Horticultural Systems to Climate Change: Agronomic and Energetic Performance Evaluation

Consiglio per la ricerca in agricoltura e l’analisi dell’economia agraria—CREA-AA, Research Centre for Agriculture and Environment, Via Celso Ulpiani 5, 70125 Bari, Italy
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Academic Editor: Peter Langridge
Received: 5 April 2017 / Revised: 8 May 2017 / Accepted: 10 May 2017 / Published: 14 May 2017
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Abstract

Adaptation can be a key factor that will shape the future severity of climate change impacts on food production. The objective of this study was to assess the suitability of an agro-ecological approach based on various techniques as potential adaptation strategy in organic horticultural systems. A long-term field experiment was set up in Southern Italy, combining: (i) appropriate soil surface shaping; (ii) cash crop rotation; (iii) agro-ecological service crops (ASC) introduction as living mulch and complementary crops; (iv) tailored organic fertilization; and (v) alternative tillage strategies. In this paper, the first two-year results on cauliflower (Brassica oleracea L.) and tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) crops, as well as energy consumptions through the Energy Analysis (EA) method are reported. Due to the climatic conditions that occurred, which were characterized by the absence of extreme climatic events (particularly rainfall), it was not possible to verify if the designed experimental device was able to mitigate the impact of climate change, whereas the EA indicated that total energy inputs were lower when ASC are introduced in cropping systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: agro-ecological service crops; crop rotations; energy analysis; energy productivity; living mulch; organic fertilization; roller crimper agro-ecological service crops; crop rotations; energy analysis; energy productivity; living mulch; organic fertilization; roller crimper
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MDPI and ACS Style

Diacono, M.; Persiani, A.; Fiore, A.; Montemurro, F.; Canali, S. Agro-Ecology for Potential Adaptation of Horticultural Systems to Climate Change: Agronomic and Energetic Performance Evaluation. Agronomy 2017, 7, 35.

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