The general aim of this meta-analysis is to synthesize and summarize the mean response of barley yield variables to elevated CO2 (eCO2) and how temperature and nitrogen (N) affect the CO2-induced yield responses of barley.
A meta-analysis procedure was used to analyze five yield variables of barley extracted from 22 studies to determine the effect size and the magnitude concerning eCO2 and its interaction with temperature and N.
CO2 enrichment increased aboveground biomass (23.8%), grain number (24.8%), and grain yield (27.4%). The magnitude of the responses to eCO2 was affected by genotype, temperature, nitrogen, and CO2 exposure methods. Genotype “Anakin” shows the highest CO2 response of aboveground biomass (47.1%), while “Bambina” had the highest grain number (58.4%). Grain yield response was observed to be higher for genotypes “Alexis” (38.1%) and “Atem” (33.7%) under eCO2. The increase of aboveground biomass and grain yield was higher when plants were grown under eCO2 in combination with higher N (151–200 kg ha−1). The interaction between eCO2 and three different temperature levels was analyzed to identify the impacts on barley yield components. The results revealed that the CO2-induced increase in grain number and grain yield was higher in combination with a temperature level of 21–25 °C as compared to lower levels (< 15 and 16–20 ℃). The response of barley yield to eCO2 was higher in growth chambers than in other CO2 exposure methods. Moreover, a higher response of aboveground biomass and grain yield to eCO2 was observed for pot-grown plants compared to field-grown.
Overall, results suggest that the maximal barley production under eCO2 will be obtained in combination with high N fertilizer and temperature levels (21–25 °C).