Respiration and Crop Productivity
Respiration is a large and important component of the carbon economy of crops. There are already several good books dealing with the biochemistry and physiol ogy of plant respiration, but there are none I know of that are devoted to the rela tionship between respiration and crop productivity, although this relationship is more and more frequently being studied with both experiment and simulation. Crop physiology books do cover respiration, of course, but the treatment is limited. The purpose of the present book is to fill this void in the literature. The approach taken here is to use the popular two-component functional model whereby respiration is divided between growth and maintenance components. Mter thoroughly reviewing the literature, I came to the conclusion that at present this is the most useful means of considering respiration as a quantitative compo nent of a crop's carbon economy. This functional distinction is used as the frame work for describing respiration and assessing its role in crop productivity. Discussions and critiques of the biochemistry and physiology of respiration serve primarily as a means of more fully understanding and describing the functional approach to studying crop respiration. It is assumed that the reader of this book is familiar with the fundamentals of plant physiology and biochemistry. The research worker in crop physiology should find this an up-to-date summary of crop respiration and the functional model of respiration. This book is not, however, a simple review of existing data.
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