The Eighth International Colloquium for the Optimization of Plant Nutrition was held in Lisbon, Portugal, 1992, and was attended by 280 scientists from 34 countries. The meeting was of high scientific standard; the programme allowed the participants ample opportunity for discussions, and exchange of results and ideas.
The present volume includes 103 refereed contributions that clearly reflect the main themes of the Colloquium. The published papers are related to the following problem areas: plant analytical procedures and associated concepts; diagnosis of nutrient status of plants in relation to fertilizer application; physiological and biochemical effects of stress (nutrient deficiencies/toxicities, salinity/alkalinity, etc.); assessment of nutrient requirements by crops and improvement of nutrient use efficiency based on dynamic models; optimization of crop nutrition in integrated agriculture in terms of maximum productivity and profitability, technical feasibility, and reduction of environmental pollution.
Since 1964, International Colloquia have been organized every four years under the aegis of what is now known as the International Association for the Optimization of Plant Nutrition (IAOPN). The aim of these meetings has been to assess the continuing and increasing role of plant nutrition in developments in horticulture, agriculture, and forestry.
Major progress has been made in use of artificial growth media, diagnosis of plant nutrient requirements and disorders of crops, the ongoing quest to improve both yield and quality of crops through efficient use of fertilizers, and the introduction of methods and materials in crop nutrition that spare the environment.
The world-wide shortage of plant production menacing the survival of many people demands for more and better research, particularly on how to increase food and where it is most needed. Major problems of international concern for the scientific community are the availability in soil media of macro and micro nutrients and the efficiency of nutrient uptake by plant roots, the interactions between nutrients and other factors, the distribution of nutrients in different plant species, biochemical functions of nutrient elements, and their contribution to plant growth, yield and product quality. Feasibility and profit are also permanent concerns about plant nutrition in crop management, to which new require ments are now imposed by the need to decrease pollution hazards, a problem of prime importance to preserve the environment of the future. is A deeper insight into basic knowledge further required as well as into practical problems in the domains of agriculture, horticulture, and forestry. Such has been the concern of the International Association for the Optimization of Plant Nutrition (IAOPN) since 1964, promoting International Colloquia every four years as an opportunity for scientists concerned with plant nutrition to report new findings and to exchange ideas, experiences, and techniques. The Eighth International Colloquium for the Optimization of Plant Nutrition was hosted by Portugal and held in Lisbon from 31 August to 8 September 1992, with 280 delegates from 34 countries.
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