Silicon increases seed weight and initial seedling growth of maize under non-stress conditions, and improves the index of velocity of germination under salt stress conditions
Keywords:abiotic stress, beneficial elements, osmotic stress, salinity, Zea mays L
Salinity is one of the most critical factors affecting agriculture worldwide. The application of beneficial elements like silicon (Si) is one of the alternatives to mitigate its effects. In this research, we evaluated the effect of Si applied during seed imbibition on mitigating the negative effects caused by salinity during the germination and initial growth phases of maize (Zea mays L.) SB-308 seedlings. Seed pre-treatment during the imbibition was made with 0.0-, 1.5- and 3.0-mM Si. Afterwards, seeds that were imbibed were placed in plastic containers and treated with 0, 80, 160, and 240 mM NaCl. The evaluated concentrations of Si and NaCl gave rise to 12 treatments. Pre-treated seeds with 3 mM Si had an increase of weight after imbibition, 5.1% higher than the control. The treatments obtained from combining NaCl and Si levels did not affect the total and relative germination. The radicle length increased by 13.6% with 3 mM Si compared to the control. Conversely, it was lower with increasing salinity. These trends were observed in plant height. The interaction of the study factors produced an increase in the radicle length in the interval from 0 to 160 mM NaCl, when the Si dose was increased. However, there were no significant differences among equal levels of salinity without Si. It is concluded that Si increased the absorption of water during the imbibition and raised the index of velocity of germination under salinity, except in the dose 240 mM NaCl. Likewise, the pre-treatment of seeds with Si tends to increase radicle length under saline conditions.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Diego NAFARRATE-RAMOS, Libia I. TREJO-TÉLLEZ, María G. PERALTA-SÁNCHEZ, Olga TEJEDA-SARTORIUS, Gabriel ALCÁNTAR-GONZÁLEZ, Fernando C. GÓMEZ-MERINO
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