Special Issue "Innovative Crop Management Practices for Maximizing the Production of Vegetables"

A special issue of Plants (ISSN 2223-7747). This special issue belongs to the section "Plant Development and Morphogenesis".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 28 February 2022.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Georgia Ntatsi
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Laboratory of Vegetable Production, Department of Crop Science, Agricultural University of Athens, Iera Odos 75, 11855 Athens, Greece
Interests: vegetable production; hydroponics; plant nutrition; plant physiology; abiotic stress; fruit quality; biofortification; nitrogen fixation; phytohormones; plant metabolism; organic production
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Leo Sabatino
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Agricultural, Food and Forest Sciences, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Ed. 5, 90128 Palermo, Italy
Interests: vegetable production; vegetable grafting; soilless cultivation; nutritional and nutraceutical vegetable fruit quality linked to cultivation condition and practices; biofortification of leafy and fruiting vegetable crops, propagation of ornamental plants
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Dimitrios Savvas
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Laboratory of Vegetable Production, Department of Crop Science, Agricultural University of Athens, Iera Odos 75, 11855 Athens, Greece
Interests: vegetable production; hydroponics; plant nutrition; greenhouse crops; greenhouse environment; irrigation water; legumes

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Agriculture is facing the challenge of feeding an estimated global population of 9.7 billion people by 2050 without compromising its natural resource base. The rising population along with the diminishing land and water resources have put tremendous pressure on farmers worldwide to meet these increasing food demands. Vegetables play an extremely important role in nutrition and health since they exert protective roles against chronic diseases such as cardiovascular, hypertension, strokes, cancer, diabetes, and blood-related and neurological diseases. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and World Health Organization (WHO) consultation on diet, nutrition, and prevention of chronic diseases, a minimum daily intake of 400–500 g per day of fruit and vegetable is recommended to prevent chronic, non-communicable diseases, and other micronutrient-related deficiencies.

An intensive agricultural production along with the climate change threat have increased the need for the transition toward more sustainable and resilient farming practices. In this regard, innovative crop management practices that increase crop production and quality through more efficient use of agricultural inputs while reducing nutrient losses, pesticide application, and greenhouse gas emissions are needed.

In this Special Issue entitled “Innovative Crop Management Practices for Maximizing the Production of Vegetables”, we invite researchers and experts to contribute original research, critical reviews, and opinions exploring innovative tools/strategies for improving nutrient use efficiency, technology development for water, fertilization and pest management, innovative greenhouse design and the design of other controlled environment systems, vertical farming, integrated and organic crop management, innovative substrates and soilless production systems (floating, NFT), novel biostimulants, plant-growth-promoting microorganisms and biofortificants, and high-throughput phenotyping approaches and breeding strategies aiming to increase resource use efficiency and abiotic stress tolerance. We also encourage contributions on agronomic practices and techniques such as soil tillage, fertilization, crop rotations, intercropping, irrigation, pruning, nursery management, grafting, and weed control that support sustainable crop production systems and intensification and improve long-term food security. The impact of these agronomic aspects on the quality of the products of vegetable crops will also be considered.

Dr. Georgia Ntatsi
Dr. Leo Sabatino
Prof. Dr. Dimitrios Savvas
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 papers will be 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. Plants is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly 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 1800 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

  • vertical farming
  • soilless culture
  • floating system
  • fertilization
  • substrates
  • aquaponics
  • nutrient use efficiency—NUE
  • pest management
  • precision farming
  • high throughput phenotyping
  • plant modeling sensors and robotics
  • legume-based cropping systems
  • biostimulants
  • plant-growth-promoting microorganisms
  • biofortification
  • soil tillage
  • organic farming
  • crop rotations
  • intercropping
  • conservation tillage
  • grafting
  • weed control

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Research

Article
Legume-Based Mobile Green Manure Can Increase Soil Nitrogen Availability and Yield of Organic Greenhouse Tomatoes
Plants 2021, 10(11), 2419; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10112419 - 09 Nov 2021
Viewed by 267
Abstract
Information about the availability of soil mineral nitrogen (N) in organic greenhouse tomatoes after the application of mobile green manure (MGM), and its impact on plant nutrient status and yield is scarce. Considering this knowledge gap, the effects of legume biomass from faba [...] Read more.
Information about the availability of soil mineral nitrogen (N) in organic greenhouse tomatoes after the application of mobile green manure (MGM), and its impact on plant nutrient status and yield is scarce. Considering this knowledge gap, the effects of legume biomass from faba beans that are cultivated outdoors (FAB), or from feed-grade alfalfa pellets at two different doses (AAL = 330 g m−2; AAH = 660 g m−2) that were applied as MGM on the nutrition and yield of an organic greenhouse crop of tomatoes were evaluated. All of the MGM treatments increased the mineral N concentrations in the soil throughout the cropping period, and the total N concentration in tomato leaves when compared to the untreated control. FAB and AAH treatments had a stronger impact than AAL in all of the measured parameters. In addition, AAL, AAH, and FAB treatments increased the yield compared to the control by 19%, 33%, and 36%, respectively. The application of MGM, either as faba bean fresh biomass or as alfalfa dry pellets, in organic greenhouse tomatoes significantly increased the plant available soil N, improved N nutrition, and enhanced the fruit yield. However, the N mineralization rates after the MGM application were excessive during the initial cropping stages, followed by a marked decrease thereafter. This may impose an N deficiency during the late cropping period. Full article
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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.

Title: Legume-based mobile green manure can increase soil nitrogen availability and yield in organic greenhouse tomato crops
Authors: Anastasios Gatsios1, Georgia Ntatsi1, Luisella Celi2, Daniel Said-Pullicino2, Anastasia Tampakaki3, and Dimitrios Savvas1*
Affiliation: 1Department of Crop Science, Laboratory of Vegetable Crops, Agricultural University of Athens, Greece 2Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, University of Torino, 10095 Grugliasco, Torino, Italy 3Department of Crop Science, Laboratory of General and Agricultural Microbiology, Agricultural University of Athens, Greece
Abstract: Information about the availability of soil mineral nitrogen (N) in organic greenhouse tomato after application of mobile green manure (MGM), and its impact on plant nutrient status and yield is scarce. Considering this knowledge gap, the effects of legume biomass from faba bean cultivated outdoors (FAB), or from feed-grade alfalfa pellets at two different doses (AAL=330 g m-2; AAH=660 g m-2) applied as MGM on the nutrition and yield of organic greenhouse crop of tomato were evaluated. All MGM treatments increased the mineral N concentrations in the soil throughout the cropping period, and the total N concentration in tomato leaves, compared to the untreated control. FAB and AAH treatments had a stronger impact than AAL in all measured parameters. In addition, AAL, AAH and FAB treatments increased yield compared to control by 19%, 33% and 36%, respectively. Application of mobile green manure either as faba bean fresh biomass or as alfalfa dry pellets in organic greenhouse tomato increases significantly plant available soil N, and improves N nutrition, and enhances fruit yield. However, the N mineralization rates after MGM application are excessive during the initial cropping stages followed by a marked decrease thereafter, and this may impose N deficiency during the late cropping period.

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