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Morpho-physiological and biochemical responses of four ornamental herbaceous species to water stress

  • Zahra Nazemi Rafi
  • Fatemeh KazemiEmail author
  • Ali Tehranifar
Original Article

Abstract

Understanding of water-deficit responses of plants can lead to better establishment and management of water-conserving landscapes. Due to the importance of landscape plants and the need for water relations of field-grown herbaceous species, this study investigated morphological and biochemical responses of Malva sylvestris, Althea rosea, Callistephus chinensis and Rudbeckia hirta under water stress. The main plots were the four plant species and the subplots were irrigation levels of 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100% reference evapotranspiration (ET0). The results indicated that 75% ET0 irrigation treatment had no effect on the relative water content of Althea rosea and R. hirta. Althea rosea and R. hirta had the highest deficit-irrigation tolerance index for root length and root density in 25% ET0. Only A. rosea, exhibited no oxidative stress as reduced chlorophyll content under 75% ET0–50% ET0, and also under 50% ET0–25% ET0. Only in R. hirta, the ratio of chlorophyll a/b was linearly increased. Water stress had no effect on total soluble carbohydrates in C. chinensis, R. hirta and M. sylvestris. Moving from 75 to 25% ET0, R. hirta showed the lowest electrolyte leakage which was followed by A. rosea. Althea rosea and R. hirta displayed a drought-avoidance mechanism.

Keywords

Landscape plants Deficit irrigation Osmolytes Relative water content Chlorophyll Growth Drought tolerance index 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We acknowledge the support of Mashhad Botanic Garden, especially Dr. Zarif and Dr. Zarrin, and Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran, during the course of this study.

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Copyright information

© Franciszek Górski Institute of Plant Physiology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Horticulture and Landscape, Faculty of AgricultureFerdowsi University of MashhadMashhadIran

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