Salt stress effect on wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) growth and leaf ion concentrations

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Dept. Desert Management, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Iran.

2 Dept. Soil management, Ghent University, Belgium.

3 Dept. Plant Production, Ghent University, Belgium.


Crops growing in salt-affected soils may suffer from physiological drought
stress, ion toxicity, and mineral deficiency which then lead to reduced growth and
productivity. A pot experiment was conducted to study the effect of different
salinity levels, i.e. ECe=3 dS m-1 (control), 8, 12 and 16 dS m-1 on wheat grain
yield, yield components and leaf ion uptake. Desired salinity levels were obtained
by mixing adequate NaCl before filling the pots. Soil water was maintained at 70%
of available water holding capacity. Results revealed that Kouhdasht and Tajan
showed highest and lowest grain yield and yield compomnents as compared to
others. Leaf Na+ and Cl- concentrations of all genotypes increased significantly
with increasing soil salinity, with the highest concentrations in Tajan, followed by
Rasoul, Atrak and Kouhdasht. Highest leaf K+ concentration and K+: Na+ ratio
were observed in Kouhdasht, followed by Atrak, Rasoul and Tajan, respectively.
Based on higher grain yield production, higher leaf K+ concentration, K+: Na+ ratio
and lower leaf Na+ and Cl- concentrations, Kouhdasht and Atrak were identified as
the most salt-tolerant genotypes.