The effect of salinity on some physiological and biochemical characteristics of alfalfa

Document Type : Research Paper


To evaluate the effects of different concentrations of salinity (control and 12 dS m-1) on morphological and physiological aspects of 10 alfalfa cultivars, an experiment was conducted using a randomized complete block design with factorial treatments in three replications.The results showed that salinity stress significantly reduced dry matter, K+/Na+ ratio and shoot and root K+ concentrations. The sodium concentration of the plants increased with salinity stress, and the salt tolerant cultivars showed lesser sodium transfer into their tissues resulting in a higher shoot and root K+/Na+ ratio compared to susceptible cultivars. K+ concentration in shoot as well as shoot K+/Na+ ratio had significant positive correlations with shoot dry matter of 0.762**and 0.835** respectively. On the other hand there was a significant negative correlation between shoot dry matter and shoot Na+ concentration (-0.831)., showed the highest significant correlation with shoot dry matter. Therefore, it seems that among the traits studied, the Na+ concentration in the shoot may be considered as an appropriate indicator for selection of salt tolerant alfalfa cultivars. The observed negative correlation between sodium concentration and the chlorophyll content (-0.551) indicate that the plant metabolism has been adversely affected by salinity stress.


Main Subjects

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Volume 49, Issue 1
June 2018
Pages 1-10
  • Receive Date: 03 February 2016
  • Revise Date: 09 August 2016
  • Accept Date: 10 September 2016
  • Publish Date: 22 May 2018