Advancements in Enhancing Environmental Stress Tolerance of Specialty Crops in Horticulture

A special issue of Horticulturae (ISSN 2311-7524). This special issue belongs to the section "Biotic and Abiotic Stress".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 29 July 2024 | Viewed by 2858

Special Issue Editors

Environmental Research and Innovation (ERIN) Department, Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST), Hautcharage, L-4940 Luxembourg, Luxembourg
Interests: plant molecular biology; transcriptomics; metabolomics; proteomics; cell suspension cultures; plant elicitors; plant (a)biotic stressors; fibre crops
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Guest Editor
Environmental Research and Innovation (ERIN) Department, Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST), L-4940 Hautcharage, Luxembourg
Interests: plant bioprocesses; plant cell wall; transcriptomics; plant secondary metabolites; plant tissue culture; plant molecular biology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Specialty crops are non-traditional crops requiring lower acreage compared to traditional commodity crops. Specialty crops comprise (ethnic) fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, herbal and culinary spices, ornamental species and industrial multi-purpose crops (e.g., hemp). Such crops promote market differentiation from traditional ones (such as wheat, tobacco, cotton, etc.). Environmental stresses, both biotic (e.g., bacteria, viruses, fungi, insect pests) and abiotic (drought, salinity, temperature, heavy metals, etc.) pose a serious threat to the final crop yield. Understanding how specialty crops react to specific environmental stressors is important for fundamental and applied research.

This Special Issue aims at gathering the latest discoveries in this field of study. Original research papers (both full articles and short communications) dealing with plant physiology, molecular biology (use of -omics), agronomy, field studies, as well as topical reviews expounding current knowledge and future perspectives are welcome.

Dr. Roberto Berni
Dr. Gea Guerriero
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Horticulturae is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • specialty crops
  • multi-purpose crops
  • abiotic stress
  • biotic stress
  • plant physiology
  • agronomy
  • molecular biology
  • omics

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

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15 pages, 4166 KiB  
Article
Effects of Temperature on Growth and Isoprene Metabolism Pathway in Eucommia ulmoides Oliv
by Wenqin Yao and Degang Zhao
Horticulturae 2023, 9(12), 1298; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae9121298 - 01 Dec 2023
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Abstract
This study aimed to explore the influence of temperature on the growth and isoprene metabolism pathways of Eucommia ulmoides seedlings. Growth indices and levels of rubber and total triterpenoids in leaves were assessed under three temperature treatments: low (15 °C/10 °C), control (25 [...] Read more.
This study aimed to explore the influence of temperature on the growth and isoprene metabolism pathways of Eucommia ulmoides seedlings. Growth indices and levels of rubber and total triterpenoids in leaves were assessed under three temperature treatments: low (15 °C/10 °C), control (25 °C/20 °C), and high (35 °C/30 °C). High-throughput sequencing identified 2309 differentially expressed genes, of which 1608 were upregulated and 701 were downregulated. After 40 days, leaf length, leaf width, and plant height were significantly lower in low- and high-temperature treatments compared with the control. Specific leaf weight was higher in LT-treated leaves. Chlorophyll a and b contents were 1.372 mg.g−1 and 0.594 mg.g−1, respectively, in control leaves, followed by low- and high-temperature treatments. Carotenoid content was the highest in LT treatment. The rubber content of LT and HT groups significantly decreased by 16.5% and 38%, respectively, compared with that of the control group. Total triterpene content was the lowest in control leaves at 1.02%, which was 30% and 20% less than that in low- and high-temperature treatments, respectively. This study provides insights into the efficient cultivation of E. ulmoides and the regulatory network of secondary metabolic pathways. Full article
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Review

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17 pages, 2819 KiB  
Review
Eustress and Plants: A Synthesis with Prospects for Cannabis sativa Cultivation
by Roberto Berni, Margaux Thiry, Jean-Francois Hausman, Stanley Lutts and Gea Guerriero
Horticulturae 2024, 10(2), 127; https://doi.org/10.3390/horticulturae10020127 - 30 Jan 2024
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Abstract
Cannabis sativa L. is a species of great economic value. It is a medicinal plant that produces several bioactive phytochemicals, and the stems of the industrial cultivars, commonly referred to as “hemp”, are sources of both cellulosic fibers and hurds used in textiles [...] Read more.
Cannabis sativa L. is a species of great economic value. It is a medicinal plant that produces several bioactive phytochemicals, and the stems of the industrial cultivars, commonly referred to as “hemp”, are sources of both cellulosic fibers and hurds used in textiles and bio-composites. Environmental stresses of biotic and abiotic nature affect plant development and metabolism and can, consequently, impact biomass yield and phytochemical content. Stress factors can be divided into eustressors and distressors; while the former stimulate a positive response in terms of growth, productivity, and resistance, the latter impair plant development. Eustressors are factors that, applied at low–moderate doses, can improve plant performance. Several studies have investigated different types of distress in C. sativa and evaluated the impact on biomass and phytochemicals, while less attention has been paid to the study of eustress. This review discusses the concept of plant eustress by referring to the recent literature and extrapolates it to applications in C. sativa cultivation. The data available on the response of C. sativa to exogenous factors are reviewed, and then, salinity eustress applied to hemp cultivation is taken as a proof-of-concept example. The knowledge developed on plant eustress and the results collected so far are discussed in light of future applications to improve the production of biomass and phytochemicals in plants of economic interest. Emphasis is placed on the potential use of eustress in conjunction with other factors shown to impact both the physiological response and metabolism of Cannabis, among which there are macronutrients and biofertilizers. Perspectives are also drawn with respect to applying the knowledge developed on the elicitation of whole plants to Cannabis cell suspension cultures, which provide a controlled, scalable, and season-independent platform to produce secondary metabolites. Full article
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