The study of the interaction between fruit trees and cover crops has been addressed in numerous works over the last 50 years or more, evidencing the need to evolve from a productive orchard to an orchard that plays different ecosystem roles in terms of environmental sustainability rather than just productivity. This review, through an analysis of the scientific literature since the 1950s, highlights the development of sustainable soil management models in fruit tree orchards, mostly considering the relationship with fruit quality traits and with the ecosystem services that result from the adoption of cover crops, aiming at identifying and formulating technical recommendations in perennial orchards. Cover crop management surely improves soil features and positively influences fruit quality in perennial woody species, but also helps to develop a better habitat for beneficial insects, thus influencing pollination. A large number of scientific approaches highlight the beneficial use of a mixture of seeds in order to enhance biodiversity, aiming at improving ecosystem services for a transition towards more sustainable systems based on agroecological management.

Are cover crops affecting the quality and sustainability of fruit production?

Giacalone G.;Peano C.;Isocrono D.;Sottile F.
2021

Abstract

The study of the interaction between fruit trees and cover crops has been addressed in numerous works over the last 50 years or more, evidencing the need to evolve from a productive orchard to an orchard that plays different ecosystem roles in terms of environmental sustainability rather than just productivity. This review, through an analysis of the scientific literature since the 1950s, highlights the development of sustainable soil management models in fruit tree orchards, mostly considering the relationship with fruit quality traits and with the ecosystem services that result from the adoption of cover crops, aiming at identifying and formulating technical recommendations in perennial orchards. Cover crop management surely improves soil features and positively influences fruit quality in perennial woody species, but also helps to develop a better habitat for beneficial insects, thus influencing pollination. A large number of scientific approaches highlight the beneficial use of a mixture of seeds in order to enhance biodiversity, aiming at improving ecosystem services for a transition towards more sustainable systems based on agroecological management.
AGRICULTURE
11
12
1201
1210
https://www.mdpi.com/2077-0472/11/12/1201
Cover crops; Ecosystem services; Fruit orchards; Quality; Sustainability
Giacalone G.; Peano C.; Isocrono D.; Sottile F.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2318/1838524
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