Article

Salinity and salt composition effects on seed germination and root length of four sugar beet cultivars

Department of Soil Science, University of Tabriz, Tebriz, East Azarbaijan, Iran
Biologia (Impact Factor: 0.7). 09/2007; 62(5):562-564. DOI: 10.2478/s11756-007-0111-7

ABSTRACT Salinization is one of the most important factors affecting agricultural land in the world. Salinization occurs naturally
in arid and semiarid regions where evaporation is higher than rainfall. Sugar beet yield declines with an increase in salinity,
but the sensitivity to salts varies with salt composition in water and sugar beet growth stage. The aim of this study was
to determine the effect of water salinity levels and salt composition on germination and seedling root length of four sugar
beet cultivars (PP22, IC2, PP36, and 7233). The experiments were undertaken with irrigation water with two salt compositions
(NaCl alone and mixture of MgSO4 + NaCl + Na2SO4 + CaCl2) in three replicates. Thirteen salinity levels with electrical conductivity (EC) of the irrigation water ranging from 0 to
30 dS/m were applied to each cultivar in both experiments. Seed germination percentage and seedling root length growth were
determined in 13 days. Statistical analysis revealed that germination and root length were significantly affected by salt
composition, cultivars and salinity levels. Regardless of salt composition, seed germination and seedling root length were
significantly affected by the irrigation water with EC up to 8 dS/m and 4 dS/m, respectively. Except for cultivar PP22, the
adverse effect of salinity of the irrigation water on seed germination and seedling root length was higher for NaCl alone
than for the salt mixture, which refers to lower salt stress in field conditions with natural salt composition.

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