THE EFFECT OF PRIMING ON EARLY GROWTH OF RAPESEED UNDER DROUGHT STRESSM. Taghvaei and M.R. Chaichi
Seed priming with osmotic solutions can markedly increase emergence, seedling vigor, and uniformity of stand establishment and growth, which will affect the final yield. An experiment on spring and winter rapeseed cultivars was set up in factorial arrangements and the data were analyzed in a Completely Randomized Block Design with four replications. The effects of the soil moisture at field capacity (FC), 85% of FC and 70% of FC throughout the experimental period and the duration of seed osmopriming treatment at three levels of no priming (control), 7 or 14 days of priming period with PEG 6000 (-01 Mpa) were evaluated on the germination and early growth of spring and winter rapeseeds. The responses of winter and spring rapeseeds were different to osmopriming period for root and shoot dry weights as well as final leaf area per plant. However, the responses of both cultivars were similar to drought stress for the other measured characteristics. At more severe drought treatments, emergence rate, emergence percentage, shoot weight, root weight and final leaf area significantly decreased. As priming period increased, emergence rate increased while mean time to full emergence decreased compared to control. The emergence percentage in winter cultivar was adversely affected by duration of priming. Winter rapeseed produced significantly higher shoot weight that could explain its higher final leaf area and significantly lower root/shoot ratio.
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