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Open AccessArticle

Modeling Yields Response to Shading in the Field-to-Forest Transition Zones in Heterogeneous Landscapes

1
Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research, Eberswalder Straße 84, 15374 Müncheberg, Germany
2
Institute of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24-25, 14476 Potsdam, Germany
3
Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability, University of British Columbia, 429-2202 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Agriculture 2019, 9(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture9010006
Received: 28 November 2018 / Revised: 18 December 2018 / Accepted: 21 December 2018 / Published: 1 January 2019
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Abstract

In crop modeling and yield predictions, the heterogeneity of agricultural landscapes is usually not accounted for. This heterogeneity often arises from landscape elements like forests, hedges, or single trees and shrubs that cast shadows. Shading from forested areas or shrubs has effects on transpiration, temperature, and soil moisture, all of which affect the crop yield in the adjacent arable land. Transitional gradients of solar irradiance can be described as a function of the distance to the zero line (edge), the cardinal direction, and the height of trees. The magnitude of yield reduction in transition zones is highly influenced by solar irradiance—a factor that is not yet implemented in crop growth models on a landscape level. We present a spatially explicit model for shading caused by forested areas, in agricultural landscapes. With increasing distance to forest, solar irradiance and yield increase. Our model predicts that the shading effect from the forested areas occurs up to 15 m from the forest edge, for the simulated wheat yields, and up to 30 m, for simulated maize. Moreover, we estimated the spatial extent of transition zones, to calculate the regional yield reduction caused by shading of the forest edges, which amounted to 5% to 8% in an exemplary region. View Full-Text
Keywords: edge effect; transition zone; solar irradiance; crop growth; maize; wheat edge effect; transition zone; solar irradiance; crop growth; maize; wheat
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Schmidt, M.; Nendel, C.; Funk, R.; Mitchell, M.G.E.; Lischeid, G. Modeling Yields Response to Shading in the Field-to-Forest Transition Zones in Heterogeneous Landscapes. Agriculture 2019, 9, 6.

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