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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2014

Can Agrometeorological Indices of Adverse Weather Conditions Help to Improve Yield Prediction by Crop Models?

Lalić, Branislava; Eitzinger, Josef; Thaler, Sabina; Vučetić, Višnjica; Nejedlik, Pavod; Eckersten, Henrik; Jaćimović, Goran; Nikolić-Djorić, Emilija


The impact of adverse weather conditions (AWCs) on crop production is random in both time and space and depends on factors such as severity, previous agrometeorological conditions, and plant vulnerability at a specific crop development stage. Any exclusion or improper treatment of any of these factors can cause crop models to produce significant under-or overestimates of yield. The analysis presented in this paper focuses on a range of agrometeorological indices (AMI) related to AWCs that might affect real yield as well as simulated yield. For this purpose, the analysis addressed four indicators of extreme temperatures and three indicators of dry conditions during the growth period of maize and winter wheat in Austria, Croatia, Serbia, Slovakia, and Sweden. It is shown that increases in the number and intensity of AWCs cannot be unambiguously associated with increased deviations in simulated yields. The identified correlations indicate an increase in modeling uncertainty. This finding represents important information for the crop modeling community. Additionally, it opens a window of opportunity for a statistical ("event scenario") approach based on correlations between agrometeorological indices of AWCs and crop yield data series. This approach can provide scenarios for certain locations, crop types, and AWC patterns and, therefore, improve yield forecasting in the presence of AWCs.


adverse weather conditions; crop models; climate-yield correlations; yield prediction; yield simulations

Published in

2014, Volume: 5, number: 4, pages: 1020-1041
Publisher: MDPI AG

    SLU Authors

    Sustainable Development Goals

    SDG13 Climate action

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Agricultural Science
    Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences

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