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Microclimate Management by Traditional Farmers

Gene C. Wilken
Geographical Review
Vol. 62, No. 4 (Oct., 1972), pp. 544-560
DOI: 10.2307/213267
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/213267
Page Count: 17
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Microclimate Management by Traditional Farmers
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Abstract

Fluxes of energy, heat, and moisture that produce distinctive crop microclimates are controlled by surface shade, albedo, conductivity, and geometry. Traditional farmers use vegetation, tillage systems, mulches, and man-made structures to modify surface characteristics and thus the microclimates. Windbreaks and groundcovers protect plants from the mechanical forces of wind and rain or hail and inhibit dispersal of natural or modified microclimates. Although descriptive evidence of climate management by traditional farmers is abundant, quantitative data to evaluate the effectiveness and the extent of particular practices are scarce. Nevertheless, climate should be added to the list of environmental factors over which traditional farmers exercise significant control.

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