To maximize crop yields on Mars it would be advantageous to do away with annuals and biannuals by engineering the latter into perennials as standard. Not only would that entail far less work to grow produce as the act of replanting is made obsolete, but per given cultivated area perennials bring forth more food and materials with less demand from the soil than the equivalent of annuals.
Imagine a superfood annual such as lentils engineered into a lentil tree for which there already are perennial equivalents in the legume family as we know thanks to the permaculturalists’listed plant species stock. Permaculture would be the ideal manner in which to create ecosystems in outer space or other planets such as Mars. Permaculture designs whole habitats from model templates known to work well together, out of ethnobotanical or zoological species that exactly match and thrive as a community in distinct environmental contexts.
To also lessen the load and maximize yield, plants should be engineered to only bear self fertile female flowers and reproduce asexually without the needs for male flowers that don’t produce fruit. That would mean less work for the plants.One day we'll have a rice tree growing in a pond in some human friendly ecosystem on Mars, surrounded by some also asexually reproducing fish, with water snails living of their waste and so much more.
We already have bred without genetic engineering perennial lettuces, onions and many other plants presently grown as annuals are only facultative annuals or have a close perennial species family member. Imagine perennial strawberries as south facing ground cover on the northern Martian hemisphere among and below perennial tomato trees such as Cyphomandra betacea with perhaps forming a light availability triangle with the melon pear bush Solanum muricatum in between.
Also, perhaps plants adaptively evolved to suck water out of the environment and store it quickly such as desert succulents or bromeliad air plants could be used for closed human ecology system such space stations or those planned for Mars or the Moon. These would be especially important if the have a dual ethnobotanical element to them such as providing edible fruit that some cacti produce. Many succulents can take in and thrive on high doses of water throughout the seasons even though their places of origin were bone dry and arid. I know this having watered many succulents over a few decades having been instructed so by Brian Lamb, a specialist in the field and former curator of The Gibraltar Botanic Gardens where I once worked.
To avoid energy costly mating seasons or behaviour and if there is a place for small animals grown for their meat in closed human ecology systems, these could also be engineered to be only female such as the Earthly Whiptail lizard of which only female members of their species exist. This is an example of a evolved vertebrate that reproduces asexually without the need for male gametes and there is literature online of how to induce this in mammals
I wrote this text on the link below after no one had thought had thought it was pertinent info at many live events related to sustainability in Martian habitats for humans and I want to move on, this is very old info.