Special Issue "Advances in Protected Cropping Technology"

A special issue of Crops (ISSN 2673-7655).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 November 2022 | Viewed by 1985

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Christopher Cazzonelli
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, Western Sydney University, Richmond, NSW 2753, Australia
Interests: carotenoid biology; mechanical stress; epigenetics; plant physiology; molecular biology; crop nutrition; postharvest; horticulture; protected cropping; tree genomics; climate change; stress acclimation
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Sachin Chavan
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, Western Sydney University, Richmond, NSW 2753, Australia
Interests: carotenoid biology; epigenetics; plant physiology; molecular biology; plant nutrition; postharvest; protected cropping; plant genomics; environmental stress biology

Special Issue Information

Dear colleague,

Declining arable land, the growing demand for food and more nutrition, and the adverse effects from climate change all impact agriculture and horticulture, sparking innovation in sustainable future food production systems. These challenges can be addressed through protected cropping of horticultural crops in controlled greenhouse environments. Protected cropping and indoor farming require a greater use of technology and automation to optimise land use, thereby offering new solutions to improve future food systems.

Innovations in energy-efficient greenhouse designs can provide energy savings using covering materials, fertigation optimisation, and water and nutrient recycling, as well as sensor system technologies. Automation of pollination and harvesting has potential to improve efficiency and reduce labour costs. Research testing the application of these new technologies and ensuring they do not compromise plant growth, yield, postharvest quality, or pest management is crucial to the success and sustainability of food production systems. This Special Issue encourages submissions related to advancements in protected cropping that address horticultural crop production and yield, food quality and nutrition, resource sustainability, pest management, environmental sustainability, and future food systems.

Cutting-edge research articles, reviews, and opinion letters that address areas related to greenhouse energy use, plant growth, environment factors driving plant responses, crop physiology, biochemical processes, flowering, pollination, yield, and/or nutritional quality are invited. Technological innovations that improve the sustainability of production systems, resource use efficiency, crop monitoring, crop growth modelling, remote sensing of crop production, nutrient quality, and pest management and/or address the cost-to-benefit analysis in protected cropping systems are welcome.

Dr. Christopher Cazzonelli
Dr. Sachin Chavan
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Crops is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • protected cropping
  • horticulture
  • nutrition
  • greenhouse
  • glasshouse
  • environment sustainability
  • postharvest
  • plant
  • crop growth
  • resource use
  • crop yield
  • pollination
  • nutrient
  • future food systems
  • robotic automation
  • sensory systems
  • light
  • temperature
  • carbon dioxide
  • humidity
  • season
  • winter
  • summer
  • pest management
  • biotic stress
  • abiotic stress
  • crop modelling
  • environmental sensors
  • crop monitoring
  • vertical cropping

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Review

Review
Precise Phenotyping for Improved Crop Quality and Management in Protected Cropping: A Review
Crops 2022, 2(4), 336-350; https://doi.org/10.3390/crops2040024 - 22 Sep 2022
Viewed by 388
Abstract
Protected cropping produces more food per land area than field-grown crops. Protected cropping includes low-tech polytunnels utilizing protective coverings, medium-tech facilities with some environmental control, and high-tech facilities such as fully automated glasshouses and indoor vertical farms. High crop productivity and quality are [...] Read more.
Protected cropping produces more food per land area than field-grown crops. Protected cropping includes low-tech polytunnels utilizing protective coverings, medium-tech facilities with some environmental control, and high-tech facilities such as fully automated glasshouses and indoor vertical farms. High crop productivity and quality are maintained by using environmental control systems and advanced precision phenotyping sensor technologies that were first developed for broadacre agricultural and can now be utilized for protected-cropping applications. This paper reviews the state of the global protected-cropping industry and current precision phenotyping methodology and technology that is used or can be used to advance crop productivity and quality in a protected growth environment. This review assesses various sensor technologies that can monitor and maintain microclimate parameters, as well as be used to assess plant productivity and produce quality. The adoption of precision phenotyping technologies is required for sustaining future food security and enhancing nutritional quality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Protected Cropping Technology)
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Review
Current Technologies and Target Crops: A Review on Australian Protected Cropping
Crops 2022, 2(2), 172-185; https://doi.org/10.3390/crops2020013 - 08 Jun 2022
Viewed by 978
Abstract
Protected cropping offers a way to bolster food production in the face of climate change and deliver healthy food sustainably with fewer resources. However, to make this way of farming economically viable, we need to consider the status of protected cropping in the [...] Read more.
Protected cropping offers a way to bolster food production in the face of climate change and deliver healthy food sustainably with fewer resources. However, to make this way of farming economically viable, we need to consider the status of protected cropping in the context of available technologies and corresponding target horticultural crops. This review outlines existing opportunities and challenges that must be addressed by ongoing research and innovation in this exciting but complex field in Australia. Indoor farm facilities are broadly categorised into the following three levels of technological advancement: low-, medium- and high-tech with corresponding challenges that require innovative solutions. Furthermore, limitations on indoor plant growth and protected cropping systems (e.g., high energy costs) have restricted the use of indoor agriculture to relatively few, high value crops. Hence, we need to develop new crop cultivars suitable for indoor agriculture that may differ from those required for open field production. In addition, protected cropping requires high start-up costs, expensive skilled labour, high energy consumption, and significant pest and disease management and quality control. Overall, protected cropping offers promising solutions for food security, while reducing the carbon footprint of food production. However, for indoor cropping production to have a substantial positive impact on global food security and nutritional security, the economical production of diverse crops will be essential. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Protected Cropping Technology)
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