The most comprehensive study of the family tree for legumes, the plant family that includes beans, soybeans, peanuts, and many other economically important crop plants, reveals a history of whole-genome duplications.
A research team led by Prof. WU Yuejin from the Institute of Intelligent Machines of the Hefei Institutes of Physical Science developed a novel matrix-based slow-release urea (MSU) recently to improve nitrogen use efficiency in rice production, and they assessed the performances of it.
Scientists are calling for more stringent pesticide bans to lower deaths caused by deliberately ingesting toxic agricultural chemicals, which account for one fifth of global suicides.
Agricultural soils under conventional farming practices contain up to 10 times higher pesticide levels than soils under organic management, according to a study across Europe from the collaboration of Diverfarming, Recare and iSQAPER projects.
The soybean cyst nematode (SCN) is the most damaging pathogen of soybean in the United States and Canada and it is spreading rapidly, according to information compiled by Gregory Tylka and Christopher Marett, nematologists at Iowa State University. SCN was first found in the United States in 1954 and most recent estimates show that SCN results in $1.5 billion in annual yield losses.
The importance of pollinators to ensure successful harvests and thus global food security is widely acknowledged. However, the specific pollinators for even major crops - such as cocoa - haven't yet been identified. Now an international research team led by the University of Göttingen has found that in fact ants and flies - but not ceratopogonid midges - appear to have a crucial role to play. The research was published in Biological Conservation.
Palmer amaranth is a hard-to-control noxious weed that can significantly reduce crop yields. It was first introduced in Minnesota in 2016 through contaminated seed mixes used for conservation plantings.
Certain chemicals can activate the innate defense mechanisms of plants, and researchers at the Tokyo University of Science are working on ways to use such chemicals as alternatives to harmful agricultural pesticides. These researchers have found that a compound derived from menthol can boost the expression of defense-related genes in soybeans, corn, peas, and other crop species. This finding may pave the way to green agricultural technologies that shield crops from pests while minimizing damage to the environment.
Wasps deserve to be just as highly valued as other insects, like bees, due to their roles as predators, pollinators, and more, according to a new review paper led by UCL and University of East Anglia researchers.
For corn, using dairy manure and legume cover crops in crop rotations can reduce the need for inorganic nitrogen fertilizer and protect water quality, but these practices also can contribute to emissions of nitrous oxide -- a potent greenhouse gas.