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Cotton Science ›› 2020, Vol. 32 ›› Issue (5): 472-482.doi: 10.11963/1002-7807.lxflyb.20200826

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Recent Advances in the Enhancement of Agroecosystem Services and Functioning by Cotton-based Intercropping Systems

Li Xiaofei, Han Yingchun, Wang Guoping, Wang Zhanbiao, Feng Lu, Yang Beifang, Fan Zhengyi, Lei Yaping, Xiong Shiwu, Xing Fangfang, Li Yabing*   

  1. Institute of Cotton Research of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences/State Key Laboratory of Cotton Biology, Anyang, Henan 455000, China
  • Received:2020-05-06 Online:2020-09-15 Published:2020-10-10

Abstract: Cotton-based intercropping systems are one of modern agriculture farming systems aiming at improving overall economic profitability of cotton field, which not only release the competition for land between other crops and cotton and increase growing area and yield of both crops, but also represent a mechanistic approach to reconciling crop production and biodiversity conservation. Recently, cotton-based intercropping systems have been widely focused and applied. Here, we reviewed the potential of cotton-based intercropping systems to reinforce agroecosystem services and functioning, including promoted plant biodiversity, improved overall productivity and economic profits, increased light use efficiency, improved cotton quality, reduced pest and disease occurrence, and suppressed weed growth. Further, the underlying mechanisms behind the enhancement of agroecosystem services and functioning by cotton-based intercropping systems through niche complementarity, interspecific facilitation, and allelopathy between intercropped species were summarized in the paper. Finally, the research prospects were also pointed out.

Key words: cotton-based intercropping, productivity advantage, niche complementarity, interspecific facilitation, allelopathy