The response of root growth in containers has been studied in recent decades. The objective was to evaluate the effect of four types of containers on root and shoot growth. The containers were two shapes, round and square, and in some containers, internal vertical walls (IVWs) were placed that increased the internal container surface area with two substrates: perlite and coir fiber. Seedlings of cucumber, pepper, and tomato were transplanted. Two experiments were performed: vegetative growth and drought stress by partial decapitation and a period without fertigation. After decapitation, preexisting and new leaf area, dry biomass or the leaves, and stem were measured. The results revealed that the type of container had no effect, nor were there significant differences between substrates. The containers with IVWs exhibited an increase in biomass and the root surface. The total contact surface with the substrate of the four container types was closely related to the recorded plant growth. Thus, IVWs not only decrease mechanical problems of roots by preventing spiralling but also favor the production of biomass in vegetable plants and substantially increase the root, enabling the plants to manage water deficit and potentially improve posttransplant stress.
Jesús Gallegos, Juan E. Álvaro and Miguel Urrestarazu
Antonio L. García, Jesús Gallego, Vicenta Fuentes, Nuria Nicolás and Ramón Madrid
The effects of different levels of phosphorus fertilization and water provision on the mineral nutrition of two clonal rootstocks of Prunus were studied. Two-year-old Prunus seedlings, Hybrid GF677 (Prunus persica × Prunus amygdalus) (PH) and Pollizo Puebla de Soto 101 (Prunus insititia) (PI) were planted in an uncultivated calcareous soil (a Xeric torriorthent derived from marl) under greenhouse conditions. They were drip irrigated with subterranean water of slightly alkaline pH (7.63), EC 0.88 dS·m–1, with a low chloride and high sulphate content. The experiment lasted two annual cycles. In October of the second year the leaf nutrient concentration and dry weight of the total leaf weight were determined in four trees of each combination of rootstock × irrigation level × fertilization treatment. The nutritive state of these trees was analyzed by vector analysis. The results point to a highly significant influence of the rootstock nature on the leaf concentrations of most nutrients. Very low Zn and Cu concentrations were recorded on both rootstocks, for both irrigation levels and several fertilizing treatments. Vector analysis confirmed the Cu deficiency resulting from several of the fertilizing treatments and both irrigation levels in PH rootstocks.