Climatic indices in the interpretation of the phenological phases of the olive in mediterranean areas during its biological cycle
The present study implemented a regional phenological model that was derived through the growing season index and adapted to a widespread Mediterranean species, the olive (Olea europaea L.). This model considers not only individual phenological events, but also the main vegetative and reproductive phenological phases of the species, in an integrated biological approach. The regional model generally does not need to include specific meteorological variables calculated as weekly or monthly averages which could limit the extrapolation over large areas. The main climatic limitations of the olive cultivation areas in the south Mediterranean at latitudes around 10° (practically speaking, the geographical limits of the olive) are estimated here. This analysis uses information relating to local climatic changes over the last two decades (1990–1999, 2000–2009) to provide interpretations of the temperature, solar radiation rate, and evapotranspiration trends. This has allowed creation of a Mediterranean phenological model adapted to the olive, which presents the contemporary climate requirements during winter and the warm summer season. The climate analysis and comparisons of these two decades has allowed us to reveal a reduction in the index according to the minimum temperature, which has particular consequences in the northern monitoring areas. This phenomenon appears to present new positive scenarios for the future regarding a northward shift of olive cultivation areas, due to the potential enlargement of the growing season in winter. However, negative scenarios can also be foreseen in consideration of the failure to satisfy the minimum chilling requirements in the traditional southern cultivation areas of the olive. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2013
Volume (Year): 116 (2013)
Issue (Month): 2 (January)
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