Department of Plant Ecophysiology, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Tabriz, Tabriz, 5166616471, Iran
Key words: Germination, Drought, Salinity, Seedling dry weight, Shepherd’s purse.
Shepherd’s purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris (L.) Medik.) is an annual weed species with a wide distribution in cereals of East Azarbaijan, Iran. Tow experiments were carried out based on randomised complete block design with four replications in Tabriz, Iran in 2014 to evaluate the effects of salinity and drought stress on shepherd’s purse germination and early seedling growth. The salinity levels were included 0, 4, 8, 12, 16 and 20 dS m-1 (deci Siemens per meter) sodium chloride (NaCl). The drought stress levels were included 0, -0.4, -0.8, -1.2, -1.6 and -2.0 MPa osmotic potentials were obtained by polyethylene glycol 8000 as osmotica. Results indicated that the effect of salinity was significant on seed germination percentage and rate, seedling root and shoot length and seedling dry weight. The all traits reduced significantly by increasing the salinity level. In salinity of 20 dS m-1 the germination% of shepherd’s purse was < 35 and the seedling dry weight reduced 65% in comparison with control (0 dS m-1). Also the effect of drought stress was significant on seed germination, seedling length and seedling dry weight and all the traits decreased by increasing the osmotic potential. The germination% of shepherd’s purse seeds in osmotic potential of -2.0 MPa was < 32 and the reduction in seedling dry matter was > 60%. Generally, it could be concluded that drought stress such as limited irrigation and salinity would be effective strategy for reduction in germination and early seedling growth of this annual weed species.
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