Over the past decade, free-air CO2 enrichment (FACE) experiments have been conducted on several agricultural crops: wheat(Triticum aestivum L.), perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne), and rice(Oryza sativa L.) which are C3 grasses; sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Möench), a C4 grass; white clover (Trifolium repens), a C3 legume; potato (Solanum tuberosum L.), a C3 forb with tuber storage; and cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) and grape (Vitis vinifera L.) which are C3 woody perennials. Using reports from these experiments, the relative responses of these crops was discussed with regard to photosynthesis, stomatal conductance, canopy temperature, water use, water potential, leaf area index, shoot and root biomass accumulation, agricultural yield, radiation use efficiency, specific leaf area, tissue nitrogen concentration, nitrogen yield, carbohydrate concentration, phenology, soil microbiology, soil respiration, trace gas emissions, and soil carbon sequestration. Generally, the magnitude of these responses varied with the functional type of plant and with the soil nitrogen and water status. As expected, the elevated CO2 increased photosynthesis and biomass production and yield substantially in C3 species, but little in C4, and it decreased stomatal conductance and transpiration in both C3 and C4 species and greatly improved water-use efficiency in all the crops. Growth stimulations were as large or larger under water-stress compared to well-watered conditions. Growth stimulations of non-legumes were reduced at low soil nitrogen, whereas elevated CO2 strongly stimulated the growth of the clover legume both at ample and under low N conditions. Roots were generally stimulated more than shoots. Woody perennials had larger growth responses to elevated CO2, while at the same time, their reductions in stomatal conductance were smaller. Tissue nitrogen concentrations went down while carbohydrate and some other carbon-based compounds went up due to elevated CO2, with leaves and foliage affected more than other organs. Phenology was accelerated slightly in most but not all species. Elevated CO2 affected some soil microbes greatly but not others, yet overall activity appears to be stimulated. Detection of statistically significant changes in soil organic carbon in any one study was impossible, yet combining results from several sites and years, it appears that elevated CO2 did increase sequestration of soil carbon. Whenever possible, comparisons were made between the FACE results and those from prior chamber-based experiments reviewed in the literature. Over all the data and parameters considered in this review, there are only two parameters for which the FACE- and chamber-based data appear to be inconsistent. One is that elevated CO2 from FACE appears to reduce stomatal conductance about one and a half times more than observed in prior chamber experiments. Similarly, elevated CO2 appears to have stimulated root growth relatively more than shoot growth under FACE conditions compared to chamber conditions. Nevertheless, for the most part, the FACE- and chamber-based results have been consistent, which gives confidence that conclusions drawn from both types of data are accurate. However, the more realistic FACE environment and the larger plot size have enabled more extensive robust multidisciplinary data sets to be obtained under conditions representative of open fields in the future high-CO2 world.