Salinity effect on crop development and yield, analysis of salt tolerance according to several classification methods

N. Katerji, J.W. van Hoorn, A. Hamdy, M. Mastrorilli

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218 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The publication is a synthesis of previous publications on the results of a long-term lysimeter experiment. From 1989 to 1998, the experimental variables were soil salinity and soil type, from 1999 onwards, soil salinity and crop variety. The plant was studied during the whole growing period by measuring the saline stress and analyzing its effect on leaf area and dry matter development and on crop yield. Salinity affected the pre-dawn leaf water potential, stomatal conductance, evapotranspiration, leaf area and yield. The following criteria were used for crop salt tolerance classification: soil salinity, evapotranspiration deficit, water stress day index. The classification according to soil salinity distinguished the salt tolerant group of sugar beet and wheat, the moderately salt sensitive group comprising broadbean, maize, potato, soybean, sunflower and tomato, and the salt sensitive group of chickpea and lentil. The results for the salt tolerant and the moderately salt sensitive groups correspond with the classification of Maas and Hoffman, excepted for soybean. The evapotranspiration deficit criterion was used, because for certain crops the relation between yield and evapotranspiration remains the same in case of drought and salinity. This criterion, however, did not appear useful for salt tolerance classification. The water stress day index, based on the pre-dawn leaf water potential, distinguished a tolerant group, comprising sugar beet, wheat, maize, sunflower and potato, and a sensitive group, comprising tomato, soybean, broadbean, chickpea and lentil. The classification corresponds with a difference in water use efficiency. The tolerant crops show a more or less constant water use efficiency. The sensitive crops show a decrease of the water use efficiency with increasing salinity, as their yield decreases stronger than the evapotranspiration. No correlation could be found between osmotic adjustment, leaf area and yield reduction. As the flowering period is a sensitive period for grain and fruit formation and the sensitive crops are all of indeterminate flowering, their longer flowering period could be a cause of their greater sensitivity. The tolerant group according to water stress day index can be divided according to soil salinity in a salt tolerant group of sugar beet and wheat and a moderately sensitive group, comprising maize, sunflower and potato. The difference in classification can be attributed to the difference in evaporative demand during the growing period. The sensitive group according to water stress day index can be divided according to soil salinity in a moderately sensitive group, comprising tomato, soybean and broadbean, and a salt sensitive group of chickpea and lentil. The difference in classification can be attributed to the greater salt sensitivity of the symbiosis between rhizobia and grain legume in the case of chickpea and lentil. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-66
JournalAgricultural Water Management
Volume62
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2003

Keywords

  • soil salinity
  • evapotranspiration
  • yields
  • salt tolerance
  • models
  • early seedling growth
  • stress day index
  • water-stress
  • soil-salinity
  • stomatal conductance
  • osmotic adjustment
  • maize
  • drought
  • plant
  • nodulation

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