Crop Productivity and Photoassimilate Partitioning

Science  24 Aug 1984:
Vol. 225, Issue 4664, pp. 801-808
DOI: 10.1126/science.225.4664.801


The photosynthetic basis for increasing the yield of major field crops is examined in terms of improving the interception of seasonal solar radiation by crop foliage, the efficiency of conversion of intercepted light to photosynthetic assimilates, and the partitioning of photoassimilates to organs of economic interest. It is concluded that, in practice, genetic and chemical manipulation of light interception over the season and of partitioning offer the most potential for achieving further increases in yield. During the history of improvement of genetic yield potential of crops, increase in the partitioning of photoassimilates to harvested organs has been of primary importance.