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Horticulturae, Volume 2, Issue 1 (March 2016) – 2 articles

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Review
Agroecology: A Global Paradigm to Challenge Mainstream Industrial Agriculture
Horticulturae 2016, 2(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae2010002 - 16 Mar 2016
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 4839
Abstract
Considerable controversy continues to exist in scientific and policy circles about how to tackle issues of global hunger, malnutrition, and rural economic decline, as well as environmental issues, such as biodiversity loss and climate change adaptation. On the one hand, powerful vested interests, [...] Read more.
Considerable controversy continues to exist in scientific and policy circles about how to tackle issues of global hunger, malnutrition, and rural economic decline, as well as environmental issues, such as biodiversity loss and climate change adaptation. On the one hand, powerful vested interests, with close ties to government, media, and academic institutions, propose high-input technology-based solutions, speculative and neoliberal “market-based” solutions, and export-oriented agricultural models. On the other hand, an international scientific and grassroots Food Movement has emerged, calling for a redesign of the Global Food System in support of small-scale agroecological farming systems. A call to re-evaluate our current Food Systems was made in 2008 by the International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD). Here, using the IAASTD study as a backdrop, we review the recent literature to outline key contentious points in the controversy between the need for high-input and “techno-based” versus agroecological farming models. A critical assessment is made of proposed strategies to protect soil resources, improve nutrient and energy cycles, protect agrobiodiversity, and promote social well-being in rural communities. With an increase in the number of affluent consumers (i.e., the middle class) in the developing world, and with the continued problem of extreme and chronic poverty with other larger sectors of society, Organic Farming and Agroecology models are put forward as a sound social, scientific, and rural development strategy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quality Management of Organic Horticultural Produce)
Article
The Effectiveness of Different Rootstocks for Improving Yield and Growth of Cucumber Cultivated Hydroponically in a Greenhouse
Horticulturae 2016, 2(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae2010001 - 06 Jan 2016
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2250
Abstract
The use of grafted vegetable seedlings has been popular in many countries during recent years, and several Cucurbita species and their interspecific hybrids have been tested as rootstocks. Graft-scion incompatibility and lower fruit quality have prevented their commercial use. In this study, the [...] Read more.
The use of grafted vegetable seedlings has been popular in many countries during recent years, and several Cucurbita species and their interspecific hybrids have been tested as rootstocks. Graft-scion incompatibility and lower fruit quality have prevented their commercial use. In this study, the efficacy of grafting the commercial Khassib cucumber hybrid onto various cucurbits, used as rootstocks, was examined in a greenhouse experiment. This experiment was done in a completely randomized design with eight treatments: local landraces of bottle gourd (Ghalyani) and pumpkin (Tanbal) and commercial Cucurbita interspecific hybrids (909, 913, Ferro, 64-19, and Shintoza). Ungrafted plants were used as controls. Results indicated that the highest survival rates were using Ferro hybrid (94%), Cucurbita maxima (Tanbal) (92%), 64-19 and Shintoza (90%). These results appeared to be related to the stem diameter of the rootstocks and, to a lesser extent, to the scion diameter. Cucumber production was not improved by grafting. The highest yield was obtained with Ferro rootstock, but it was no different compared to ungrafted plants. A significantly lower production than the control was observed with Ghalyani (−44%), 913 (−73%) and 64-19 (−35%) rootstocks. Total soluble solids (TSS) of fruit produced by ungrafted plants was significantly higher than the other treatments. The highest length/diameter ratio was obtained with 909 and Ghalyani rootstocks, whereas more stocky fruit were produced by plants grafted onto Tanbal and 64-19 rootstocks. Full article
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