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  • Author or Editor: Lea Karni x
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We investigated the effects of N nutrition on growth and carbohydrate partitioning of pepper (Capsicum annuum L., cv. Maor) seedlings in the greenhouse and on their subsequent recovery and development after transplanting. Seedlings received 0, 30, 100, or 200 mg N/liter for 14 days, after which they were transplanted and received 100 mg N/liter. Nitrogen levels below 100 mg·liter−1 inhibited shoot growth and leaf chlorophyll content; both were severely inhibited in the absence of supplemental N. Root growth had a negative relation with N supply; an enhanced root: shoot ratio was observed under low-N regimes. On a unit-leaf-area basis, CO2 fixation was not affected when N was present; however, it was greatly inhibited in the absence of N. Changes in the leaf starch and soluble sugar concentrations occurred as a function of N supply and leaf age. In the roots, low N led to lower sucrose and higher levels of hexose and starch. More sucrose was transported and accumulated into leaf veins of low-N tissue. Exogenously supplied 14C-labeled sucrose was rapidly converted into starch in the low-N tissue. Seedlings that received 100 mg N/liter had the highest post-transplant growth rate and flowered earlier. Carbohydrate status of young pepper seedlings influenced their post-transplant recovery. Optimal N supply is essential for full recovery and development of transplants.

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