Enhancement of Lettuce Yield by Manipulation of Light and Nitrogen Nutrition

in Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science
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  • 1 Department of Horticulture, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907


Several levels of photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) were tested for effects on growth of 4 cultivars of lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) under controlled-environment conditions. Growth of ‘Salad Bowl’, ‘Bibb’, and ‘Ruby’ was greater at 932 µmol s -1m-2 than at ≤ 644 µmol s-1m-2 under a 16-hour photoperiod. Thirty mM NO3- or 5 mM NH4+ + 25 mM NO3- increased leaf dry weight while reducing leaf chlorosis in ‘Salad Bowl’ and ‘Grand Rapids’ relative to that with 15 mM NO3-, and reduced leaf purpling in ‘Bibb’ and ‘Ruby’ with little or no effect on yield. Continuous illumination with 455 or 918 µmol s-1 m-2 stimulated yield of ‘Salad Bowl’ and ‘Bibb’ when 30 mM N as NH4+ + NO3- was used relative to that with 15 mM NO3-.

Contributor Notes

Project conducted in partial fulfillment of the MS degree.

Associate Professor.

Received for publication March 3, 1982. Purdue Agricultural Experiment Station Journal Paper No. 8864. Project supported in part by NASA Cooperative agreement NCC 2100. The authors thank P.A. Hammer for helpful discussion regarding experimental design and statistical analysis of data. The cost of publishing this paper was defrayed in part by the payment of page charges. Under postal regulations, this paper therefore must be hereby marked advertisement solely to indicate this fact.