A methodology for estimating phenological parameters of rice cultivars utilizing data from common variety trials

Shin Fukui, Yasushi Ishigooka, Tsuneo Kuwagata, Toshihiro Hasegawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)


Crop phenology models play a pivotal role in predicting yields under climate change. Cultivar-specific model parameters are essential for accurate prediction, but their estimation generally requires elaborate and laborious experiments, and such parameter sets have therefore been available only for a small number of cultivars. We propose methodology for estimating phenological parameters, combining a stochastic parameter estimation method (genetic algorithm) with the use of a database comprising 30 years of records from variety trials conducted at experimental stations across Japan. Optimal parameter sets were selected based on the results of cross-validation tests. This methodology allowed us to estimate phenological parameters objectively. We estimated phenological parameters for the 10 leading cultivars currently planted in Japan, and showed that these parameters reflect the cultivars’ sensitivity to temperature and/or photoperiod. The proposed methodology can be used to provide quantitative evaluations of the environmental responses of rice cultivars, without relying on elaborate and laborious experiments, and substantially improves the efficiency of phenological trait phenotyping.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-89
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Agricultural Meteorology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jun 10
Externally publishedYes



  • Crop model parameters
  • Cross-validation
  • Oryza sativa
  • Variety trials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Atmospheric Science

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