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Nicolás G. (ed.), Bradford K.J. (ed.), Côme D. (ed.) — The biology of seeds
Nicolás G. (ed.), Bradford K.J. (ed.), Côme D. (ed.) — The biology of seeds

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Название: The biology of seeds

Авторы: Nicolás G. (ed.), Bradford K.J. (ed.), Côme D. (ed.)


Seeds play a dominant role in agriculture, serving as the means to propagate
plants from one generation to the next, as food for humans and our domesticated
animals, and as an important commodity in the global economy. The
grains of cereals, which comprise 90% of all cultivated crops, contribute up
to half of the global per capita energy intake. The Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO) of the United Nations provides data on the production
and trade of the 19 major crops from which the mature seed is used for food,
and of these 15 are from the grass (Poaceae) and legume (Leguminosae) families
(Gooding et al., 2000).
Agriculture originated in various parts of the world some 8000–10,000
years ago as society developed from one that was predominantly huntergatherer,
following herds of migrating animals and gathering plants as they
travelled, to a more stable agrarian-oriented existence (Heiser, 1981). The
harvesting and planting of seeds was a major factor in this transition.
Permanent settlements in the near-east of Asia, in the so-called Fertile
Crescent, stretching north and east of the land between the Tigris and
Euphrates rivers into present-day Turkey, Lebanon and Israel, coincide with
areas where two wild varieties of wheat – emmer and einkorn – have been
found. These are the unmistakable progenitors of modern wheat, and by
crossing with other wild grasses, the goatgrasses, the fundamental genetic
basis of modern breadwheats was established. These breadwheats appear
surprisingly early, however, having been recorded in excavations in Iran and
Syria that date back to between 5000 and 6000 BC. Ancient irrigation using
channels to support the development of agriculture have been uncovered
between the Tigris and Euphrates; this practice may have contributed
to the eventual decline in crop production in this area with the increasing
introduction of salts into the soil.

Язык: en

Рубрика: Биология/

Статус предметного указателя: Неизвестно

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Год издания: 2003

Количество страниц: 472

Добавлена в каталог: 12.02.2011

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