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A model for cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) fiber length and strength formation considering temperature-radiation and N nutrient effects

Zhao, Wenqing, Meng, Yali, Li, Wenfeng, Chen, Binglin, Xu, Naiyin, Wang, Youhua, Zhou, Zhiguo, Oosterhuis, Derrick M.
Ecological modelling 2012 v.243 pp. 112-122
Gossypium hirsutum, fertilizer rates, fiber quality, genotype, leaves, lint cotton, model validation, nitrogen, nitrogen content, nutrition, simulation models, solar radiation, sowing, temperature, uncertainty, China
Simulation of the formation of cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) fiber length and strength is still an area of great uncertainty. The aim of this study was to develop a model for simulating cotton fiber length and strength formation and explaining the effect of genotype, weather (temperature and solar radiation), and crop N supply on the two indices. The duration of fiber elongation for fiber length formation and secondary wall synthesis for fiber strength formation were determined as proportional to the boll physiological developmental time (PDT), which was simulated as a function of temperature, radiation, and N. The effect of temperature and radiation on fiber length and strength was modeled as a function of the photo-thermal product (PTP), the product of thermal effectiveness and radiation. The subtending leaf N concentration per unit area of cotton boll (NA) was used as the indicator of boll N nutrition. The changes of NA with boll development, N application rate, and boll position were simulated by a semi-empirical formula. Based on the relations between the actual and critical NA, the nitrogen response functions for the formation of fiber length and strength parameters were quantified, accounting for the interactive effects of N nutrition and PTP. Calibration and validation of the model were made using fiber quality data obtained from three years with two sowing dates and three or four N application rates at three locations in China. The average RMSE and RE for cotton fiber length and strength predictions were 1.03mm and 12.4%, 2.20cNtex⁻¹ and 10.4%, respectively. The proposed model well explained the observed genotypic and environmental variations in fiber length and strength formation of cotton in China.