Prolonged drought periods, increasingly occurring worldwide due to global climate change, could affect the growth and productivity of both traditional and climate-resilient crops, including quinoa. Specifically, the vegetative growing cycle of this species is highly sensitive to drought conditions. In this context, using organic amendments could help plants cope with drought due to their ability to enhance soil water status. So, the current study aimed to investigate the effect of different organic amendments, i.e., two biochars (from woodchips and vineyard prunings) and a vermicompost (from cattle manure), applied to the soil alone and mixed at 2% rate (w/w), on the vegetative development of quinoa (cv. Titicaca), during which a period of water stress was imposed from the twelve-leaf stage to the bud stage. A set of growth-related parameters were measured both during and at the end of the experiment, along with a set of water-related parameters, at the end of the water-stress period and after soil re-watering. The results showed that woodchip biochar, both alone and mixed with vermicompost, significantly affected plant growth during the water-stress period, also allowing a quicker recovery once drought conditions ended. Indeed, the leaf number and area, SPAD index, leaf and stem fresh weight, and dry matter content in plants treated with woodchip biochar, alone and mixed with vermicompost, were higher than vineyard pruning biochar, alone and mixed with vermicompost and similar to the well-watered control plants. Similar results were observed considering the yield contributing traits detected at the end of the experiment, including the main panicle length, number of sub-panicle, as well as fresh weight and dry matter content of both panicle and sub-panicles. Additionally, the water-related parameters, especially the low turgid weight to dry weight ratio of woodchip biochar treated plants, showed evidence of better growth than vineyard pruning biochar. At the end of the experiment, the WUE of plants treated with woodchip biochar and vermicompost, both alone and mixed, was higher than vineyard pruning biochar alone and mixed with vermicompost. Among the tested organic amendments, woodchip biochar alone and mixed with vermicompost positively affected the vegetative growth response of quinoa under water-stress conditions.

Evaluation of Vegetative Development of Quinoa under Water Stress by Applying Different Organic Amendments

Muhammad Zubair Akram
;
Anna Rita Rivelli
2023-01-01

Abstract

Prolonged drought periods, increasingly occurring worldwide due to global climate change, could affect the growth and productivity of both traditional and climate-resilient crops, including quinoa. Specifically, the vegetative growing cycle of this species is highly sensitive to drought conditions. In this context, using organic amendments could help plants cope with drought due to their ability to enhance soil water status. So, the current study aimed to investigate the effect of different organic amendments, i.e., two biochars (from woodchips and vineyard prunings) and a vermicompost (from cattle manure), applied to the soil alone and mixed at 2% rate (w/w), on the vegetative development of quinoa (cv. Titicaca), during which a period of water stress was imposed from the twelve-leaf stage to the bud stage. A set of growth-related parameters were measured both during and at the end of the experiment, along with a set of water-related parameters, at the end of the water-stress period and after soil re-watering. The results showed that woodchip biochar, both alone and mixed with vermicompost, significantly affected plant growth during the water-stress period, also allowing a quicker recovery once drought conditions ended. Indeed, the leaf number and area, SPAD index, leaf and stem fresh weight, and dry matter content in plants treated with woodchip biochar, alone and mixed with vermicompost, were higher than vineyard pruning biochar, alone and mixed with vermicompost and similar to the well-watered control plants. Similar results were observed considering the yield contributing traits detected at the end of the experiment, including the main panicle length, number of sub-panicle, as well as fresh weight and dry matter content of both panicle and sub-panicles. Additionally, the water-related parameters, especially the low turgid weight to dry weight ratio of woodchip biochar treated plants, showed evidence of better growth than vineyard pruning biochar. At the end of the experiment, the WUE of plants treated with woodchip biochar and vermicompost, both alone and mixed, was higher than vineyard pruning biochar alone and mixed with vermicompost. Among the tested organic amendments, woodchip biochar alone and mixed with vermicompost positively affected the vegetative growth response of quinoa under water-stress conditions.
2023
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11563/169276
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