From image processing to computer vision: plant imaging grows up

Image analysis is a field of research which, combined with novel methods of capturing images, can help to bridge the genotype–phenotype gap, where our understanding of the genotype has until now been leaps and bounds ahead of our ability to work with the phenotype. Methods of automating image capture in plant science research have increased in usage recently, as has the need to provide objective and highly accurate measures on large image datasets, thereby bringing the phenotype back to the centre of interest. In this special issue of Functional Plant Biology, we present some recent advances in the field of image analysis, and look at examples of different kinds of image processing and computer vision, which is occurring with increasing frequency in the plant sciences.