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Journal of Environmental Biology

pISSN: 0254-8704 ; eISSN: 2394-0379 ; CODEN: JEBIDP

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        Abstract - Issue May 2010, 31 (3)                                                                                                             Back


Perennial-like adaptation mechanisms of annual legumes to limited irrigation


P. Kostopoulou*1, M.S. Vrahnakis2, T. Merou3 and M. Lazaridou3

1Laboratory of Range Science (236), Faculty of Forestry and Natural Environment,

Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, 54124, Thessaloniki, Greece

2School of Forestry and Management of Natural Environment, TEI of Larissa - 43100, Karditsq, Greece

3School of Forestry and Management of Natural Environment, Tei of Kavala - 66100, Droma,  Greece

(Received: September 05, 2008; Revised received: January 10, 2009; Accepted: March 02, 2009)


Abstract: The hydrodynamic behavior of two annual legumes (Trifolium angustifolium L. and Onobrychis caput-galli (L.) Lam.) under water shortage was studied in a rain shelter experiment. Seeds were collected from natural grasslands of northern Greece and were sown in pots. Two months after seedlings’ emergence, full irrigation (up to field capacity) and limited irrigation (40% of field capacity) were applied. During the vegetative period the leaf water potential and the relative water content were measured at seven day intervals in both treatments. T. angustifolium retained the lowest values of y both under full (-0.11 to -1.78 MPa) and limited irrigation (-0.16 to -2.90 MPa), while the highest values in both cases were those of O. caput-galli (-0.05 to -0.5 MPa). The results suggested that T. angustifolium was the species mostly affected by limited water supply. T. angustifolium seemed to display adaptation mechanisms to drought similar to those of perennial plants. O. caput-galli displayed a more isohydric behavior, by not altering its water potential under limited irrigation.

Key words: Drought escape, Drought tolerance, Water savers, Water spenders, Mediterranean

                        PDF of full length paper is available online


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