Influence of partial root drying on morpho-anatomical and physiological characteristics of tomato fruits (Lycopersicon esculentum L.)

Faculty of Agriculture, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina (1)


Partial root drying (PRD) is a new irrigation and plant growing technique which improves water use efficiency without significant yield reduction. The aim of the presented thesis was to investigate the effect of this technique on the growth of vegetative and generative tomato organs, and especially fruits, its influence on the activity of enzyme cell wall peroxidase morpho-anatomical characteristics of flower and fruit pedicels, influence on fruits yield and quality and ions distribution in tomato organs. Tomato line L-4 (Lycopersicon esculentum L.) was grown in commercial compost with the root system divided equally between two plastic pots. During the vegetative and generative phases of development, one half of the root system of PRD was maintained in a dry state, while the other half was optimally watered. After 10 days an inversion was made in such a way that previously wet side was exposed to drought and dried side was watered. Obtained results showed that as a consequence of PRD treatment the growth of whole plants was reduced with fruit size and yield of PRD plants being similar to control, as well as morpho-anatomical characteristics of pedicels, ions and lycopen contents although sugar content was higher in PRD than in control plants. These results suggest that with PRD technique we can halve the demand for irrigation water and increase the nutritional value of the tomato fruit.

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