This Department of Crop Science seminar is presented by Dr. Jose Franco Jr., Research Ecologist at the Northern Great Plains Research Laboratory USDA — Agricultural Research Service. Dr. Franco is a
This Department of Crop Science seminar is presented by Dr. Jose Franco Jr., Research Ecologist at the Northern Great Plains Research Laboratory USDA — Agricultural Research Service.
Dr. Franco is a candidate for Assistant/Associate Professor of Urban Food Production Systems in the Department of Crop Sciences.
Abstract: Diverse food production systems have the potential to provide a number of ecosystem services such as habitat and forage for pollinators, enhanced plant resource-use efficiency, reduced external inputs, and increased food production per unit of land. In multispecies systems, niche partitioning can lead to a more complete use of available resources, and positive mutualistic relationships between species can alleviate plant stress during times of suboptimal environmental conditions. Consequently, diverse plant communities can result in an increased in net primary productivity relative to monocultures as has been found in natural communities. To further increase the level of diversity, the integration of livestock in food production systems mimics natural grazing ecosystems. Integrated crop-livestock systems, coupled with the use of annual and perennial cover crops and forages, have the potential to enhance nutrient cycling, reduce weed pressure, reduce external fertilizer inputs, enhance plant nutrition and crop quality, and increase crop yield. Dr. Franco will be presenting on studies ranging from small-scale vegetable production systems to larger-scale integrated cover crop-livestock systems. The holistic approaches he utilizes in his research are aimed at balancing food production maximization with the enhancement of ecosystem services with the end goal of minimizing negative environmental impact. Integrated techniques such as those that will be discussed are especially relevant to urban and peri-urban producers who function on limited space.
(Tuesday) 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Edward R. Madigan Laboratory
Department of Crop Sciences