Gilmanov, T. G., J. M. Baker, C. J. Bernacchi, D. P. Billesbach, G. G. Burba, S. Castro, J. Chen, W. Eugster, M. L. Fischer, J. A. Gamon, M. T. Gebremedhin, A. J. Glenn, T. J. Griffis, J. L. Hatfield, M. W. Heuer, D. M. Howard, M. Y. Leclerc, H. W. Loescher, O. Marloie, T. P. Meyers, A. Olioso, R. L. Phillips, J. H. Prueger, R. H. Skinner, A. E. Suyker, M. Tenuta, and B. K. Wylie. 2014. Productivity and carbon dioxide exchange of leguminous crops: estimates from flux tower measurements. Agronomy Journal 106:545-559.

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Net CO2 exchange data of legume crops at 17 flux tower sites in North America and 3 sites in Europe representing 29 site-years of measurements were partitioned into gross photosynthesis and ecosystem respiration by using nonrectangular hyperbolic light-response function method. The analyses produced net CO2 exchange data and new ecosystem-scale ecophysiological parameter estimates for of legume crops determined at the diurnal and weekly time steps. Dynamics and annual totals of gross photosynthesis, ecosystem respiration, and net ecosystem production were calculated by gap-filling with multivariate nonlinear regression. Comparison with the data from grain crops obtained with the same method demonstrated that CO2 exchange rates and ecophysiological parameters of legumes were lower than for maize, but higher than for wheat crops. Year-round annual legume crops demonstrated a broad range of net ecosystem production, from sinks of +760 g CO2 m-2 yr-1 to sources of –2100 g CO2 m-2 yr-1, with average of –330 g CO2 m-2 yr-1, indicating overall moderate CO2-source activity related to shorter period of photosynthetic uptake and metabolic costs of nitrogen fixation. Perennial legumes (alfalfa) were strong sinks for atmospheric CO2 with average NEP of +980 (range 19 550 to 1200) g CO2 m-2 yr-1.

DOI: 10.2134/agronj2013.0270

Associated Treatment Areas:

Regional or Synthesis

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