Skip to main content
Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2020

Challenges for Simulating Growth and Phenology of Silage Maize in a Nordic Climate with APSIM

Morel, Julien; Parsons, David; Halling, Magnus A.; Kumar, Uttam; Peake, Allan; Bergkvist, Goran; Brown, Hamish; Hetta, Marten

Abstract

APSIM Next Generation was used to simulate the phenological development and biomass production of silage maize for high latitudes (i.e., >55 degrees). Weather and soil data were carefully specified, as they are important drivers of the development and growth of the crop. Phenology related parameters were calibrated using a factorial experiment of simulations and the minimization of the root mean square error of observed and predicted phenological scaling. Results showed that the model performed well in simulating the phenology of the maize, but largely underestimated the production of biomass. Several factors could explain the discrepancy between observations and predictions of above-ground dry matter yield, such as the current formalization of APSIM for simulating the amount of radiation absorbed by the crop at high latitudes, as the amount of diffuse light and intercepted light increases with latitude. Another factor that can affect the accuracy of the predicted biomass is the increased duration of the day length observed at high latitudes. Indeed, APSIM does not yet formalize the effects of extreme day length on the balance between photorespiration and photosynthesis on the final balance of biomass production. More field measurements are required to better understand the drivers of the underestimation of biomass production, with a particular focus on the light interception efficiency and the radiation use efficiency.

Keywords

APSIM model; silage maize; radiation use efficiency; biomass; light interception efficiency; calibration

Published in

Agronomy
2020, volume: 10, number: 5, article number: 645
Publisher: MDPI

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Agricultural Research for Northern Sweden
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Agricultural Research for Northern Sweden
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Crop Production Ecology
Kumar, Uttam
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Agricultural Research for Northern Sweden
Peake, Allan
CSIRO Agr and Food
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Crop Production Ecology
Brown, Hamish
New Zealand Inst Plant and Food Res Ltd
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Agricultural Research for Northern Sweden

UKÄ Subject classification

Agricultural Science

Publication Identifiers

DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10050645

URI (permanent link to this page)

https://res.slu.se/id/publ/106898