Crops and Soils
A series of field and plant growth chamber experiments were conducted in 2006 and 2007 to study how relative humidity (RH), genotypes and nitrogen application rates affect organ temperatures and spikelet fertility rates in rice. It was observed that organ temperatures varied with air temperature, RH, genotype and nitrogen application rate. Increases in RH at constant air temperature and increasing air temperature with a constant RH both increased organ temperatures significantly. Cultivars also exhibited differences in organ temperatures; those cultivars with erect panicles recorded lower organ temperatures than those with droopy panicles under similar climatic conditions. Similarly, cultivars with panicles above the flag leaf had lower temperatures at the panicle when compared to those plants with the panicle below the flag leaf. It was also found that panicle temperature showed a significant negative correlation with both grain filling rate and seed setting rate. Spikelet fertility could be maintained by reducing spikelet temperature under decreasing RH in a high-temperature environment. Panicle fertilizer application rates had a significant effect on the organ and canopy temperatures. The canopy temperature of rice grown with an ample supply of nitrogen was generally cooler than the canopy temperature of a nitrogen-deficient treatment.
(Received September 09 2009)
(Online publication February 02 2010)