Agrometeorology - Wind And Plant Growth

Effect of Wind on Crop Production      

Wind direction and velocity have significant influence on crop growth.

Beneficial impact of wind

  1. Wind increases the turbulence in atmosphere, thus increasing the supply of carbon dioxide to the plants resulting in greater photosynthesis rates.
  2. Wind alters the balance of hormones.
  3. Wind increases the ethylene production in barley and rice.
  4. Wind decreases gibberillic acid content of roots and shoots in rice.
  5. Nitrogen concentration in both barley and rice increase with increase in wind speed

Wind influences crop production in two ways

(1) Physiological impact 
(2) Mechanical impact

(1) Physiological impact:

  • Increases transpiration especially cuticular transpiration than stomatal transpiration. 
  • Hot wind accelerates the drying of the plants by replacing humid air by dry air in the inter cellular spaces. For example, rice crop during June-July months shows tip drying.
  • Wind increases turbulence in the atmosphere and availability of CO2 and thereby increased photosynthesis.
  • Beyond a certain wind speed the rate of photosynthesis becomes constant.

(2) Mechanical impact on plants:

            (i) Strong wind damages the shoots
            (ii) Lodging (Paddy, Sugarcane, Banana etc.,)
            (iii) Flower and fruit shedding 
            (iv) Crops and trees with shallow roots are uprooted. 
            (v) Cold wind causes chilling injuries 
            (vi) Causes soil erosion 
            (vii) Soil deposition causes poor aeration in root zone

Lodging due to strong winds

Uprooted tree due to strong wind


Protection of plants from wind damage:

  • Shelter belts and wind breaks: Refers to growing trees and tall crops across the direction of prevailing wind to reduce the physiological and mechanical damage to crops. Wind breaks reduces the wind velocity and creates favourable microclimate. 
  • Adjusting the direction of planting. 
  • Providing support to the tall crops (eg) Banana.

Providing support to the tall crops (eg) Banana

Wind breakers