Flooding Reduces Gas Exchange and Growth in Snap Bean

in HortScience

This study was conducted to determine the effect of various flooding durations on the growth, water relations, and photosynthesis of the snap bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.). Greenhouse-grown plants of cv. Blue Lake 274 were flooded for 0 (control), 1, 3, 5, or 7 days. Leaf water potential (ψ), stomatal conductance (gs), transpiration (E), and net photosynthesis (Pn) were measured at the completion of the flooding period and after recovery for 7 days. Root, stem, and leaf dry weights were recorded after plants were allowed to recover from the flooding stress for 7 days. The values for ψ, gs, E, and Pn decreased quadratically with the increase in the duration of flooding. The Pn of plants flooded for 1 day was 17% lower than that of the control and it reached near zero in plants flooded for 7 days. The decrease in Pn after 1 day of flooding was not associated with ψ or gs; however, for longer duration of flooding, Pn decline coincided with the decline in gs. A week after the cessation of flooding, the level of recovery in ψ, E, and Pn was linear and that in gs quadratic to the duration of prior stress experienced by the plant. However, after recovering for 7 days, none of the flooded plants regained gas exchange activities at par with the control. The relationship of stem dry weight to duration of flooding was linear, while a quadratic model provided the best fit for the regression of root and leaf dry weight on the number of days of flooding. Overall, even 1 day of flooding reduces photosynthesis in snap bean and causes a decrease in dry weight of the plant. the extent of decrease in both increasing with the duration of flooding.

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