Tropical Crop Science

TPSS 200


Noa Lincoln

Semesters taught:

Fall 2016


To survey the evolution of crops and agriculture, particularly the United States and tropical areas, and the factors important in crop production in the tropics and subtropics. To understand the evolution of the American and Hawaii's agriculture systems, with emphasis on the role of native peoples, immigrants, USDA, and the Land-Grant university. Emphasis is on the interrelationships among crop plants, environmental and social factors, essential plant nutrients, and cultural practices. To introduce students to technical writing in agricultural science.

Skills and knowledge to be acquired:

Understand the principles and practices underlying modern crop science. Appreciate the importance of botany, production, utilization, value of tropical crops, to world commerce and in Hawaii. Be able to access the array of agriculture information resources. Improve your skills in gathering and reporting oral information, writing, and through writing, knowledge of course subject matter.

Computer skills to be acquired:

Word processing


BIOL 171/171L or BOT 101/101L and CHEM 151 (or concurrent)


Plant Science 1987. Barden, Halfacre, Parrish. McGraw-Hill Book Company

Films and videos:


Guest Speakers:


Course organization:

  • Using Email; Writing activities; Notes and Resources on the web
  • Course Introduction; The nature of agronomy and horticulture
  • Origins of agriculture
  • America the Bountiful / Plant agricultural resources in Hamilton Library
  • Crop Classification Outline; Plant Nomenclature The rationale for classification.
  • Form and Function- Anatomy and Morphology of Crop Plants.
  • Cellular, Asexual, and Sexual Reproduction and Inheritance
  • Growth and Development - Vegetative and Reproductive Growth and Development
  • Photosynthesis
  • Respiration and Metabolism
  • Environmental Factors- Solar Energy, Crop Photosynthesis, Crop Responses to Light & Carbon dioxide
  • Water, Transpiration, Water Management
  • Temperature; Temperature Effects on Plants
  • Soils Physical and Chemical Properties, Hawaii soils, Tillage
  • Plant Nutrition
  • Fertilizers and Fertilizer Practices
  • Determining Fertilizer and Amendment Needs (Soil sampling; Soil acidity; Organic fertilizers)
  • Crop Pests, birds, mammals.
  • Plant Pathology, Diseases, Nematode
  • Weeds - herbicides
  • Crop manipulations Sexual (seed) propagation
  • Plant Propagation - Asexual Plant Propagation; Cuttings, Layering, Grafting
  • Specialized structures
  • Crop Improvement - Breeding Objectives and Methods, Genetic Engineering
  • Directing Plant Growth - Pruning, training,
  • Nursery culture


  • Ornamentals
  • Landscape and turf
  • Vegetables and Melons
  • Fruits and Nuts
  • Grain, Sugar and Forage Crops
  • Forestry Tropical forest issues
  • Ag Production and Marketing in Hawaii
  • Postharvest Handling and Storage
  • Future of Agriculture in Hawaii


Grading will be on the basis of the following: 

Two one hour mid-terms (40%), Quizzes (approximately weekly) (20%), Writing assignments & Oral Presentation (20%), Final exam (cumulative) (20%).

Letter grade assignments will be made on the basis of the following percentages: A - 90 - 100; B - 80 - 89; C - 70 - 79; D - 60 - 69; F - 0 - 59.

The grade assignment procedure may be modified to take into consideration natural groupings of scores. This option will be used only to adjust borderline grades.


Course Website: