Effect of Drought Stress Levels on Seedling Morpho-physiological Traits of Alfalfa (Medicago sativa) Populations grown in Glasshouse

Document Type: Research and Full Length Article

Authors

1 Department of Natural Resources, Fars Agricultural and Natural Resources Research and Education Centre; Agricultural Research, Education and Extension Organization (AREEO),

2 Research Institute of Forests and Rangelands; Agricultural Research, Education and Extension Organization (AREEO)

3 Department of Agronomy and Plant Breeding, College of Agriculture, Shiraz University

Abstract

The seeds of ten populations of alfalfa (Medicago sativa) were collected in their natural habitats during rain fed area from different parts of the Fars province, Iran, in 2013. A factorial experiment was conducted in the glasshouse of agriculture and natural resources researches center of Fars province where exposure to light was adjusted for 14-hour light and 10-hour dark, accompanied by 20 to 25 as minimum to maximum temperature. Ten alfalfa populations (factor A) and four water stress treatments of 100, 75, 50, and 25% field capacity (FC) as (factor B) were arranged in a factorial experiment based on completely randomized design with three replications. Shoot and root fresh and dry weight, root and stem length, root/stem length ratio (RS) and free proline content were measured. Data were subjected to analysis of variance, cluster analysis, principle component analysis and heritability. The main effect of population and water stress treatments were significant for all of traits (P

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