The Impact of Mulching on Crop Production and Farmland Environment

A special issue of Agronomy (ISSN 2073-4395). This special issue belongs to the section "Farming Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2024 | Viewed by 941

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Institute of Agricultural Environment and Sustainable Development, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, China
Interests: plastic film mulching; plasticulture; microplastics; environmental impact assessment; life cycle assessment

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Guest Editor
Institute of Agricultural Environment and Sustainable Development, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, China
Interests: plastic film mulching; plasticulture; microplastics; water-saving agriculture; dryland agriculture

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Crop Research Institute, Shandong Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Jinan 250100, China
Interests: straw returning; carbon footprint; nitrogen management; nitrogen footprint; crop cultivation

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Mulching is an important agricultural production measure that is beneficial for promoting crop yield, reducing water use efficiency, controlling weeds and pests, and preventing soil erosion. Various mulching materials (plastic film mulching, straw mulching, organic mulching, etc.) and mulching modes (furrow mulching, ridge mulching, etc.) have different impacts on crop production and the soil environment.

However, the inappropriate use of mulching, especially plastic film mulching, can lead to negative environmental impacts. Residual plastic film in the soil can damage its granular structure, reduce its permeability, and worsen its physical and chemical properties, directly affecting crop growth. Some plastic films degrade into microplastics or decompose into harmful substances, leading to the risk of polluting soil and water sources and damaging the agricultural ecological environment.

Therefore, this Special Issue seeks to publish related research on (1) the impacts of various mulching materials and modes on crop production, including but not limited to crop yield, water use efficiency, and nutrient recycling; and (2) the active and negative impacts of mulching on the farmland environment, including but not limited to greenhouse gas emissions, active nitrate leaching, ecosystem services, and microplastic pollution.

Dr. Jixiao Cui
Prof. Dr. Wen-Qing He
Dr. Yingxing Zhao
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • plastic film mulching
  • straw mulching
  • soil surface mulching
  • organic mulching
  • microplastic
  • crop production
  • farmland environment
  • soil ecology

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Research

20 pages, 3008 KiB  
Article
Environmental Impact of Various Rice Cultivation Methods in Northeast China through Life Cycle Assessment
by Yu Wang, Wenqing He, Changrong Yan, Haihe Gao, Jixiao Cui and Qin Liu
Agronomy 2024, 14(2), 267; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy14020267 - 25 Jan 2024
Viewed by 710
Abstract
Rice, a crucial staple in China, is cultivated through various techniques, including seedling transplanting, dry direct seeding, and film mulching. Despite its significance, rice production is a considerable environmental burden. Using a life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology, this study aimed to evaluate the [...] Read more.
Rice, a crucial staple in China, is cultivated through various techniques, including seedling transplanting, dry direct seeding, and film mulching. Despite its significance, rice production is a considerable environmental burden. Using a life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology, this study aimed to evaluate the environmental impacts of four rice cultivation methods (transplanting rice, dry direct-seeding rice, dry direct-seeding rice with polyethylene film (PE), and dry direct-seeding rice with biodegradable film) in Northeast China. The results indicate that the magnitude of environmental impacts among treatments was consistent across years. The potential values of all environmental impacts of the four different cultivation methods of rice in the 2021 field trial were smaller than the results of the same cultivation method of rice system in the 2022 field trial. Among the four rice cultivation methods, the consumption of energy showed inconsistency over the two years, with the highest energy consumption in the first year being for dry seeding with PE film and in the second year for dry seeding without film. Additionally, transplanting exhibited the highest impact on water resource consumption and climate change. Dry direct-seeding rice displayed the highest eutrophication and ecotoxicity. Dry direct-seeding rice with a biodegradable film had the least impact in terms of acidification. Moreover, dry direct-seeding rice with a biodegradable film minimized water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions without compromising yield. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Impact of Mulching on Crop Production and Farmland Environment)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

1. Impact of Straw Mulching Amount on Soil Environment, Water Use Efficiency, and Yield Formation of Soybeans in the Loess Plateau Region
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