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Michael V. Mickelbart and Mary Lu Arpaia

Salinity effects on `Hass' avocado was studied on three rootstocks, `Thomas' (TH), `Toro Canyon' (TC), and `Duke 7' (D7). Four levels of salinity (1.4, 3.0, 4.5, and 6.0 dS·m–1) were applied to 1-year-old trees grown in sand culture for 10 weeks. Increased salinity resulted in decreased trunk cross-sectional area and reduced shoot growth. Specific leaf area and dry weight decreased linearly with increased salinity. TH was significantly more affected than TC of D7. Leaf necrosis was also greatest in TH. Older leaves had the highest percentage of leaf necrosis, while younger leaves of TH exhibited symptoms only in the 6.0 dS·m–1 treatment. TH had the highest Cl leaf levels. TC maintained the lowest Na levels in the scion plant organs, indicating an ability to sequester Na in the rootstock. TC also had the lowest Na:K ratio in leaf tissue, indicating that TC can utilize K as an osmoticum. Predawn xylem potential decreased linearly with increased salinity in all rootstocks. Leaf osmotic potential decreased with increased salinity; however, leaf age moderated the response, indicating an adjustment to the stress. No rootstock differences were observed. Net CO2 assimilation (A) decreased with time only in trees exposed to 4.5 or 6.0 dS·m–1. Reduction in A due to increased salinity was less in younger leaves. No rootstock differences were noted. Chlorophyll per leaf area decreased with increased salinity to the greatest degree in TH.

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Liyuan Huang, Jun Yuan, Hui Wang, Xiaofeng Tan, and Genhua Niu

acclimatization period of 6 months, Al was added to the nutrient solution and was supplied in the form of AlCl 3 in concentrations of 0 (control), 0.5, 1.25, 2, and 4.0 m m for 90 d (from 2 July to 30 Sept. 2015). The nutrient solution was adjusted to pH 4.2 × 1

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J.E. Warren and M.A. Bennett

Osmopriming has been shown to enhance seed performance by increasing germination rates and uniformity. Furthermore, these enhancements persist under less-than-optimum conditions, such as salinity, reduced water availability, and excessively high or low temperatures. Additional benefits include resistance to soil pathogens due to lower leachate levels and more rapid emergence. To augment these existing qualities, it would be advantageous to incorporate beneficial organisms that antagonize soil-borne diseases, combining the benefits of both systems into a single procedure. To accomplish this, processing tomato seeds (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. OH8245) were bioprimed in aerated –0.8 Mpa NaNO3 at 20°C for 4 days, at which time a mixture of nutrient broth, a defoaming agent, and beneficial bacteria that has been adjusted to the same osmotic potential is added. The bacteria used, Pseudomonas aureofaciens AB254, has been proved to control Pythium ultimum on a variety of crop seeds. After 7 days the seeds are removed having been primed and colonized with 105 colony forming units (cfu)/seed. In the absence of pathogen pressure, osmoprimed and bio-osmoprimed seeds performed similarly improving overall germination by 40% after 3 days, as well as low temperature (10–15°C) germination. However, when these seeds were sown in soilless media inoculated with P. ultimum, osmoprimed and bio-osmoprimed emergence was 57% and 74%, respectively, showing the improvements that these biologicals can provide. Thermogradient table results, storage tests, cfu/seed, and pathogen control will be discussed.

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J.E. Warren and M.A. Bennett

Improved germination under unfavorable soil conditions is an important safeguard against yield losses in direct-seeded crops. Osmoprimed seed has been shown to provide earlier and more uniform germination as well as improve low temperature germination. These attributes combined with the reduced rates of damping-off associated with Pseudomonas aureofaciens AB254 creates a bioosmopriming seed treatment that provides rapid germination under a wider range of soil temperatures while exhibiting the disease resistance and improved growth associated with bacterial coatings. The objective of this work is to combine biopriming and osmopriming into one procedure, thus creating an environment for adequate seed hydration and rapid multiplication of beneficial bacteria which will thoroughly colonize the seed surface. Processing tomato seeds (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. `OH8245') were bio-osmoprimed in aerated –0.8 MPa NaNO3 at 20°C for 4 days. On the fourth day, a mixture of nutrient broth, a defoaming agent, and bacteria that have been adjusted to the same osmotic potential is added. This is done so that the removal of seeds from the tank at the end of the 7-day treatment coincides with peak populations of bacteria. Pseudomonas aureofaciens AB254 multiplies very rapidly in this environment, with colony forming units for tomato averaging 4 × 105/seed. Results will also be reported for cucumber seed (Cucumis sativus L. `Score'), which were treated using a similar procedure. Bacterial populations per seed, germination characteristics and pathogen control will be discussed.

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Yaling Qian and Jack D. Fry

Greenhouse studies were conducted on three warm-season turfgrasses, `Midlawn' bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. × C. transvaalensis Burtt-Davy], `Prairie' buffalograss [Buchloe dactyloides (Nutt.) Engelm.], and `Meyer' zoysiagrass (Zoysia japonica Steud.), and a cool-season turfgrass, `Mustang' tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb.) to determine 1) water relations and drought tolerance characteristics by subjecting container-grown grasses to drought and 2) potential relationships between osmotic adjustment (OA) and turf recovery after severe drought. Tall fescue was clipped at 6.3 cm once weekly, whereas warm-season grasses were clipped at 4.5 cm twice weekly. The threshold volumetric soil water content (SWC) at which a sharp decline in leaf water potential (ψL) occurred was higher for tall fescue than for warm-season grasses. Buffalograss exhibited the lowest and tall fescue exhibited the highest reduction in leaf pressure potential (ψP) per unit decline in ψL during dry down. Ranking of grasses for magnitude of OA was buffalograss (0.84 MPa) = zoysiagrass (0.77 MPa) > bermudagrass (0.60 MPa) > tall fescue (0.34 MPa). Grass coverage 2 weeks after irrigation was resumed was correlated positively with magnitude of OA (r = 0.66, P < 0.05).

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Kenneth B. Marcum and Charles L. Murdoch

Physiological responses to salinity and relative salt tolerance of six C4 turfgrasses were investigated. Grasses were grown in solution culture containing 1, 100, 200, 300, and 400 mm NaCl. Salinity tolerance was assessed according to reduction in relative shoot growth and turf quality with increased salinity. Manilagrass cv. Matrella (FC13521) (Zoysia matrella (L.) Merr.), seashore paspalum (Hawaii selection) (Paspalum vaginatum Swartz), and St. Augustinegrass (Hawaii selection) (Stenotaphrum secundatum Walt.) were tolerant, shoot growth being reduced 50% at ≈400 mm salinity. Bermudagrass cv. Tifway (Cynodon dactylon × C. transvaalensis Burtt-Davey) was intermediate in tolerance, shoot growth being reduced 50% at ≈270 mm salinity. Japanese lawngrass cv. Korean common (Zoysia japonica Steud) was salt-sensitive, while centipedegrass (common) (Eremochloa ophiuroides (Munro) Hack.) was very salt-sensitive, with total shoot mortality occurring at ≈230 and 170 mm salinity, respectively. Salinity tolerance was associated with exclusion of Na+ and Cl- from shoots, a process aided by leaf salt glands in manilagrass and bermudagrass. Shoot Na+ and Cl- levels were high at low (100 to 200 mm) salinity in centipedegrass and Japanese lawngrass resulting in leaf burn and shoot die-back. Levels of glycinebetaine and proline, proposed cytoplasmic compatible solutes, increased with increased salinity in the shoots of all grasses except centipedegrass, with tissue water levels reaching 107 and 96 mm at 400 mm salinity in bermudagrass and manilagrass, respectively. Glycinebetaine and proline may make a significant contribution to cytoplasmic osmotic adjustment under salinity in all grasses except centipedegrass.

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Sameh Sassi-Aydi, Samir Aydi, and Chedly Abdelly

more costly than NH 4 + assimilation. Common bean responds to osmotic stress by osmotic adjustment, which enhances stress tolerance ( Sassi et al., 2010a , 2010b ). A previous study with common bean cultivars showed the relative sensitivity of cv

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Terence L. Robinson and Bruce H. Barritt

Abbreviations: ABA, abscisic acid; c, t-ABA, cis, trans-abscisic acid; LPI, leaf plastochron index; PI, plastochron index age; ψ P , leaf turgor pressure; ψ S , leaf osmotic potential; ψ W , leaf water potential; t , t-ABA, trans, trans

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Motoko Iida, Nancy A. Bantog, Kunio Yamada, Katsuhiro Shiratake, and Shohei Yamaki

The regulation of NAD+-dependent sorbitol dehydrogenase (NAD-SDH, EC 1.1.1.14) by sugar was investigated by using sliced tissues of japanese pear (Pyrus serotina Nakai cv. Kousui) fruit in order to determine its role in the mechanism of sugar accumulation in fruit tissue. The results of the activities and steady-state levels of the protein and mRNA indicate that NAD-SDH in japanese pear fruit is among the sugar-inducible genes. By preincubating the sliced tissues for 16 hours in a medium without sugar, NAD-SDH activity declined and reached a stable level that was maintained for up to 40 hours. The washing procedure also reduced the sugar concentration in the apoplast and cytosol of the sliced tissues to low concentrations and enabled them to be manipulated by exogenous applications of carbohydrate solutions. Incubation of tissues in 50 or 100 mm sorbitol for 8 hours led to enhanced expression of the NAD-SDH gene as determined by increased mRNA and protein levels and enhanced enzyme activity. The presence of 100 mm glucose, sucrose, or mannitol also gave significant stimulation on the levels of activity, protein, and mRNA of NAD-SDH compared with those of control tissues bathed in media in which the osmotic potential had been adjusted to that of the sugar solutions by adding polyethylene glycol. However, fructose was ineffective in stimulating NAD-SDH activities and the level of the protein was not enhanced but the level of mRNA was increased. Therefore, it is suggested that NAD-SDH gene transcription is enhanced by each sugar investigated, and fructose appears to be unique as it also influences NAD-SDH at a post-transcriptional level.

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William R. Graves and Sarah J. Gardner

Alnus maritima [Marsh.] Nutt. (seaside alder) is a rare species that occurs naturally only on soils that are frequently or constantly saturated with fresh water. The objective of our first experiment was to determine effects of drought and flooding treatments of differing severity on foliar gas exchange, water relations, and development of plants grown in containers in a greenhouse. In a second experiment we examined how the rate of water loss from soil during drought episodes affected the gas exchange and survival of leaves. In the first experiment, changes in soil moisture content, which ranged from saturation to 10% or less by volume across treatments, were associated with altered stem water potential and net photosynthesis. Analysis of the osmolarity of liquid extracted from leaves indicated that osmotic adjustment did not occur in response to drought. Shoot dry weight per plant ranged from over 7 g (only the lower portion of the soil profile kept saturated) to less than 3 g (entire soil profile constantly saturated). Episodes of drought of different severity led to plants with shoots that weighed between these two extremes, and exposure to soils with 10% water or less by volume did not elicit leaf desiccation or abscission. Results of the second experiment suggest that leaf desiccation can result from exposing plants to 10% water or less by volume if the drought develops rapidly in a small volume of soil. We conclude that, despite the niche it occupies in nature, seaside alder may have the potential to be used in managed landscapes with soils that vary in moisture content.