Studies on the Growth and Forage Production of Some Atriplex Species Under Different Levels of Salinity

Volume04-2016
Advances in Agricultural Science 04 (2016), 04: 53-63

Studies on the Growth and Forage Production of Some Atriplex Species Under Different Levels of Salinity

Ahmed Kandil 1, Ahmed Attia 1 and Ali Fahmy 1
1Agronomy Department, Faculty of Agriculture, Mansoura University, Egypt.

ABSTRACT

This investigation was carried out during the two seasons of 1999/2000 and 2000/2001 to study the growth and forage production of some Atriplex species under different levels of salinity. The most important results could be summarized as follows: Both numbers of leaves as well as branches /plant, Leaf Area Index (LAI), average of both fresh and dry weights per plant (g) was significantly differed due to Atriplex species under study. Salinity concentration evidently affected all vegetative characters of Atriplex plant. It was found that increasing salinity levels caused some losses in the growth and forage production in the two seasons. Relevant results clearly indicated that Atriplex species differed among themselves as crude protein of leaves and stems was concerned since A. nummularia surpassed the other species due to this trait. Salinity levels affected the crude protein content (%) especially that of leaves since higher salinity levels caused lower protein (%) in both leaves and stems. Atriplex nummularia proved to be the most suitable specie among all the species involved in the present study. The growth status of this plant was improved as salinity level was increased up to 0.8% and then began to decrease due to higher salinity levels since the least growth and forage production were recorded due to the higher salinity level of 2.9% NaCl.

Keywords: Atriplex species, Forage production, Salinity stress


Introduction

The pressure of human and livestock population, which is increasing at an alarming pace in developing countries, particularly in Egypt, has borough into focus the emergency of maximizing production from every bit of land including those vast lands either unproductive or under productive. In Egypt, there is shortage of fodder especially during summer season. To fill up this gab, fodder production needs to be stepped up growing suitable shrubs. Saltbush plants (Atriplex species, Fam.Chenodiaceae) have been reported to produce adequate good forage on salt lands. However, field trials of Atriplex on arid salt lands are lacking. Many investigators stated that Atriplex plant has good nutritive value, and also, it can be used as biological reclamation technique for desalinization of saline soils (EL-Deek et al., 1991 and Abusteit et al., 1991). Zeinab and Sallam (1996) mentioned that the measurement of the biochemical constituents are certainly needed to elucidate the characteristics of adaptation resulted under salinity stress .A correlation between the growth of some Atriplex spp. and the increase of salinity stress has been reported by several workers .Edwards and Brown (1998) stated that a plant in a drying, saline soil is exposed to increasing levels of both water stress and osmotic stress , because the matrix potential and the osmotic potential decrease simultaneously with decreasing soil moisture .The response of plants to saline environments is one of the most important features when selecting for plant species to cultivate the desert lands , where water resources , in general , are saline according to the effect of salinity levels in irrigation water on chemical composition. Strogonov et al (1970) found that using water containing NaCl, CaCl 2 and NaSo4 in equal cationic concentration caused about 50% reduction in chlorophyll content .Such results was mainly due to the decrease in absorption of minerals needed for chlorophyll biosynthesis i.e. iron and magnesuim .On another hand , Sakvan and petroyan (1964) found that the amount of total and protein nitrogen dropped sharply in grab leaves under soda salinization conditions .They attributed this retardation of protein synthesis to disturbance in cation balance , particularly the abundance of sodium cations .It is well known that salinity affects plant growth on two ways :a) Increase in osmotic pressure of soil solution is associated with decreasments in the physiological availability of water to the plant .b)Effect of accumulation of toxic levels of various ions within the plant .Ashby and Beadle (1957) concluded that Atriplex nummularia is defined as an acrinohalophyte i.e. possesses specialized epidermal bladders (vesicular salt hairs) through which salts is actively excreted avoiding progressive accumulation .However , Greenway (1968) and EL-Shorbagy (1969) found that high levels of salinity depressed significantly the growth characters .Gale and Meyer (1970) reported  that optimum growth of Atriplex spp. was obtained when the osmotic potential of the used culture solution was in the range of 3-5 bar NaCl . Mozafar (1970) found that growth of Atriplex halimus was strongly stimulated by low levels of salinity. Also, plant growth was much better on saline media containing equal parts of NaCl and KCl rather than on different concentration of Hogland solution. EL-Shorbagy (1975) reported that salinity depressed the growth and decreased fresh and dry weights but being lowest in A. nummularia. Uchiyama (1987) mentioned that Atriplex plants is characterized as halophyte since it tolerates a relatively high concentrations of salt due to the presence of vesiculated hairs on the surface of the leaves and stems and its ability for excreting the absorbed salt through leaves surface.

In general, it can be said that salinity causes stunting and depression in the growth which may be due to a destruction of chlorophyll leading to the lowering of photosynthesis rate. However, Mahmoud and Malik (1996) pointed out that Atriplex can survive high salinity levels. On the other hand, many workers reported that components of this plant were greatly affected by salinity especially proteins (Sahsah, 1992), amino acids (Khafaga, 1995) and nucleic acids (Gibson et al., 1984).

Therefore, the aim of this investigation was to study the effect of salinity levels on growth and forage production and the changes of some nitrogenous constituents, especially crude protein, of selected Atriplex species which could be widely cultivated in Egypt

 

Material and Methods

Four Atriplex species i.e. A. nummularia, A. canescense, A. halimus and A. leucoclada were grown in pots in a greenhouse on 15th Oct., 1999 on the basis of such pilot study. The salt used in salinization process was brought directly from the slatterns, where the soluble anions (CO3, HCO3, SO4, CL), and cations (Ca++, Mg++, Na+, K+) were measured in meq/100g salts, oven – dry basis by standards procedures as described by Jackson (1967). The potted non –saline soils were artificially salinized by dissolving the salt crust (NaCl is the most dominant salt) in an amount of tap water equivalent to soil field capacity to achieve the studied salinity treatments, i.e. 0.2%, 0.5%, 0.8%, 1.1%, 1.4%,1.7%,2.0%,2.3%,2.6%,2.9% NaCl. Salinity of the original soil, 0.2 and 0.22 in both seasons , respectively, was taken into consideration when preparing the required degree of salinity .Plastic pots of 40cm diameter and 70cm depth were used .Each pot was filled with 26 kg non-saline clay soil taken from the top surface of soil of the experimental farm and screened through a 2mm sieve .The mechanical and chemical properties of the soil were determined .It contained 46.8% clay and 23.9% silt estimated according to the international pipette method with ammonium hydroxide as a dispersing agent .Water holding capacity was 62% according to the method described by Richards (1954) . Calcium carbonate was 3.4% determined using Collins Calcimeter .Total nitrogen was 187 mg 100g-1 soil determined at wave length of 725 nm in the sodium bicarbonate solution as described by Jackson (1967) .Total salts were 0.2g 100-1g soil gravimetrically determined in the 1:4soil :water extract as described by Jackson (1967) .An amount of ballast (stones) was put at the bottom of each sack , then forty plants of each of previous species translocated to the sack .A plastic trunk about 25-30 cm tall was put . After that, each one of the plastic sacks was filled with one seedling of 8-month age which was transplanted and irrigation once every two or three weeks through the trunk and another through the top surface of the sack where the salinity levels have been dissolved about 8liters of water: Initially tab water was used for irrigation until the seedlings were 8 months old. Factorial experiment in randomized complete block design with four replicates was achieved and the following characters were studied:

Average plant height (cm), average number of leaves /plant, number of branches /plant, leaf area index (LAI), fresh as well as dry weight /plant (g) and crude protein % of both leaves and stems were estimated. (LAI) was determined according to the formula:

 

 

For crude protein determination, Atriplex samples were oven dried at 70 oC till constant weight and dry weight was recorded. The plant material was ground to afine powder and sub samples of 0.2(g) were wet digested. Thereafter, nitrogen was colorimetrically at aware length of 420nm by the Nessleers method as described by Jackson (1967). The colorimetric determination was carried out using Ziess spectrophotometer (spekol).

First cut was taken about 20cm above the soil surface of the sack after 147 days from transplanting. Both of the second and third cuts were taken after three months after the first cut, respectively. The fourth, fifth and sixth cuts were taken after 105 days from the third cut.

Table 1: Chemical composition (meq/100g) of the salt crust used in salinization process.

Anionic and cationic composition. ( meq /100 g  salt )
Anions Sum of anions Cations Sum of cations
CO3 HCO3 SO4– – CL Ca++ Mg++ Na+ K+
– – 4.89 18.8 1696.3 1720.0 11.1 8.92 1697.4 2.6 1720.0

 

 

Table 2: Physical and chemical analysis of the experimental soil.

Soil texture Saturation % PH EC ds/m Particles size distribution

mm

Texture CaCO3 % O.M %
Clayey 70.00 7.9 2.03 24.00 24.00 50.8 Clayey 2.3 1.9

Table 3: Soluble ions (meq/L) of the experimental soil.

     Soil Ca++ Mg++ Na+ K+ CO3 HCO3 Cl SO4
Clayey 4.10 2.40 5.5 0.06 2.4 4.0 5.6

Table 4: Total macro, micronutrients and trace elements (ppm) in the experimental soil.

N P K Fe Mn Zn Cu Ni Pb Cd
580 290 718 2291 120 101 20 20.9 16.4 1.4

Table 5: available macro, micronutrients and trace elements (ppm) in the experimental soil.

N P K Fe Mn Zn Cu Ni Pb Cd
112 10 350 13 11 0.9 0.8 0.7 4.9 0.2

 

Statistical analysis:

Data were subjected to the proper statistical analysis of the randomized complete block design and factorial randomized complete block design as described by Gomez and Gomez (1984) was utilized. Treatments means were compared using LSD. Computation were done using computer software.

 

Results and Discussion

Relevant data revealed that average number of leaves as well as average number of branches /plant were significantly affected by Atriplex species since A. leucoclada produced highest numbers of both leaves and branches /plant during the different cuts in the two seasons.

Concerning salinity concentration, it was evident that highest average number of both leaves and branches /plant realized due to lower salinity concentrations of 0.2% and 0.5% NaCl in both seasons (Table 6&7). These results are conformed by those of others including Uchiyama (1987), in Japan. On the other hand, these two characters were reduced progressively due to incremental concentrations of NaCl since the least averages were recorded due to the highest concentration of 2.9 % NaCl. Such reduction in leaf as well as branches numbers due to higher salinity levels may be attributed to a destruction of chlorophyll leading to the lowering of photosynthesis rate (Edwards and Brown, 1998).  Strogonove et al. (1970) stated that chlorophyll was destroyed as a result of high levels of salinity which affect the strength of the forces binding the pigment protein complex to the chlorophyll structure.

As regard to salinity effect on the average plant height (cm) of different Atriplex species ,it was clear that this triat ,in general ,was improved by increasing NaCl concentration from 0.2% to 0.5% and the maximum plant height  was achieved due to concentration of 0.8% NaCl and then plant height began to decrease with excess in salinity level .Since the shortest plants were observed when irrigation water contained the highest salinity level of 2.9% NaCl and this was true , on the whole ,for all Atriplex species studied in this investigation (Table 8) .Abdullah et al .(1993) showed that there was a reduction in plant height of Atriplex plant with increasing salinity .Thes results were true at different growth periods. They stated that a large part of reduction in plant height in saline media was the result of the combined suppressing action of salinity and transpiration on plant water potential.

They, also added that salinity was suggested to depress plant height through reduction in cell size or the number of cells per unit area. Since salinity had a dwarfing effect on plant height.  Moreover ,Khafaga (1991) attributed salinity advers effects on plant growth to the specific toxic effects of ions excessivelly absorbed from saline solution and to the imbalance of nutritive cations in tissues of salts affected plants.Average fresh weight /plant (g) of Atriplex species significantly differed during all cuts in the first and second seasons.The results clearly showed that A.nummularia recorded the heighest average of fresh weight /plant (g) during cuts and their total in both seasons.

Average of fresh weight /plant (g) as affected by salinity concentrations significantly differed during different cuts of the two seasons and their totals. The results indicated that the highest average of fresh weight /plant(g) was produced from lower salinity concentration of 0.2%,0.5% and 0.8%NaCl during different cuts from the first to the sixth cuts as well as the total of fresh weight .Similar trend was detected as the averages of dry weight (g) /plant were concerned (Table 9&10) These results agree with those of Zeinab and Sallam (1996)who stated that increasing salt concentration in irrigation water caused a reduction in dry weight /plant (g) of Atriplex plant. This reduction effect of salinity may be ascribed to the disturbance in metabolic path ways in the plant as a result of the adverse effect of salts on enzymatic activity.

Data collected on the protien content of both leaves and stems of Atriplex plants revealed that Atriplex species significantly differed as this character was concerned.  Planting A.nummularia evidently produced leaves containing highest protein percentage which averaged 13.7% .While ,the highest protein % in stems was recorded in A. leucoclada (1.4%).The results clearly indicated ,also , that salinity concentration significantly affected protein % in leaves and stems .Highest protein % in leaves realized due to salinity concentrations of 0.2% NaCl which averaged 17.4% in leaves .However ,the lowest protein % in stems were produced due to salinity concentration of 2.9% NaCl which averaged 0.4% only .These results may be conformed by those of other workers including Khafaga (1991) who concluded that crude protein % decreased with higher salinity levels .

This physiological decrease of protein content due to higher salinity levels may be attributed to the reduction in RNA and DNA content required for protein synthesis. Adverse effect of NaCl salinity on protein content in tissues of salt affected plants was, also, detected by Uchiyama (1987), in Japan. It is generally agreed that the concentration of most metabolic components in plants decreases with active growth due to the contribution in bulding new organs and tissues and diluting with some other un-metabolic components (Staples and Teonniessen,1984)

 

Table 6: Average numbers of leaves / plant as affected by Atriple spp.  and salinity concentration during different cuts, of 1999 / 2000 and 2000 / 2001 seasons.

Treatments Cuttings of 1999/2000 season Cuttings of 2000/2001 season
1st 2 nd 3 rd Average 4th 5 th 6 th th Average
Atriplex species :
A.nummularia 263.4 282.2 269.4 271.7 311.1 227.0 234.8 257.6
A.halimus 221.8 226.7 224.4 224.3 293.3 195.9 204.9 231.4
A.leucoclada 305.6 352.2 341.3 333.0 358.6 269.4 361.1 296.4
A.canscense 108.6 130.8 116.6 118.6 155.4 102.5 101.1 119.7
F. test ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
LSD       5 % 37.4 39.6 37.7 20.5 38.5 30.0 31.8 31.8
LSD       1 % 49.7 52.6 50.0 27.0 51.1 39.9 42.3 43.0
B: Salinity concentrations :
0.2% NaCl 324.3 362.1 378.7 355.0 410.2 291.4 269.1 323.5
0.5 % NaCl 356.9 379.9 359.2 365.3 395.6 322.6 302.8 340.3
0.8 % NaCl 356.0 398.2 354.3 369.5 445.6 297.6 293.7 345.6
1.1 % NaCl 271.0 299.2 270.0 280.1 349.4 239.1 253.0 280.5
1.4 % NaCl 231.9 287.7 279.4 266.3 306.7 220.6 235.3 254.2
1.7 % NaCl 214.9 233.6 238.4 229.0 269.9 193.9 214.0 226.0
2.0 % NaCl 161.7 172.8 157.1 163.9 190.9 142.1 147.4 160.1
2.3 % NaCl 152.8 147.1 156.1 152.0 176.8 120.8 123.8 140.4
2.6 % NaCl 99.3 108.4 103.6 103.8 134.1 87.3 94.0 105.1
2.9 % NaCl 79.8 90.7 82.4 84.3 116.8 71.8 71.6 86.7
F- test ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
LSD     5 % 59.1 62.6 59.5 23.8 60.9 47.5 50.4 28.6
LSD     1 % 78.6 83.1 79.1 31.4 80.9 63.1 66.9 37.8
Interaction

A´  B

N.S N.S N.S ** N.S * N.S **

 

Table 7: Average number of branches/plant as affected by Atriplex species and salinity concentrations during different cuts of 1999/2000 and 2000/2001 seasons.

 

Treatments

Cuttings of 1999/2000 season Cuttings of 2000/2001 season
1st 2 nd 3 rd Av. 4 th 5 th 6 th Av.
A: Atriplex species :
A. nummularia 10.8 12.9 14.1 12.6 14.6 10.2 9.8 11.0
A. halimus 14.1 14.6 14.2 14.3 16.4 12.1 11.0 13.1
A. leucoclada 15.7 17.0 17.0 16.5 18.7 13.6 11.9 14.8
A. canscense 7.0 8.0 7.1 7.4 9.3 6.5 5.8 7.2
F.test ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
LSD       5 % 1.5 1.7 1.7 2.1 2.0 1.5 1.3 2.1
LSD       1 % 2.0 2.3 2.3 2.8 2.7 1.9 1.8 2.8
B: Salinity concentrations :
0.2 % NaCl 14.0 15.6 16.9 15.5 18.6 13.4 10.1 14.0
0.5 % NaCl 16.2 17.9 17.9 17.3 18.7 13.2 10.7 14.2
0.8  % NaCl 17.2 19.3 18.8 18.5 22.0 15.9 13.1 17.0
1.1  % NaCl 13.4 15.1 14.7 14.3 16.7 12.1 12.5 13.8
1.4  % NaCl 13.0 14.3 14.3 13.8 16.0 11.4 11.2 12.9
1.7 % NaCl 11.8 13.5 13.7 13.0 15.1 10.9 10.6 12.2
2.0 % NaCl 9.6 10.1 9.7 9.9 11.3 8.1 7.9 9.1
2. 3% NaCl 9.3 9.8 9.6 9.6 11.0 8.1 7.4 8.8
2.6 % NaCl 7.3 8.1 7.9 7.8 9.8 6.9 6.6 7.8
2.9  %NaCl 7.0 7.3 7.0 7.2 8.1 6.2 6.2 6.8
F. test ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
LSD     5 % 2.4 2.8 2.7 1.3 3.2 2.3 2.1 1.3
LSD     1 % 3.2 3.7 3.6 1.8 4.3 3.1 2.8 1.7
Interaction A´B ** ** N.S ** ** * * **

 

Table 8: Average plant height (cm) as affected by species and salinity concentrations during cuttings of in first and second seasons.

 

Treatments

Cuttings of 1999/2000 season Cuttings of 2000/2001 season
1st 2 nd 3 rd Av. 4 th 5 th 6 ththt Av.
A: Atripex species :
A. nummularia 52.5 53.1 53.3 52.9 55.3 60.8 58.3 58.1
A. halimus 51.4 48.4 46.4 48.7 46.6 69.2 64.4 60.1
A. leucoclada 40.9 41.3 37.1 39.8 51.1 47.6 45.9 48.2
A. canscense 21.0 20.2 19.9 20.3 29.0 22.6 22.3 24.6
F. test ** ** ** N . S ** ** ** **
LSD       5 % 5.7 5.1 5.3 4.1 5.8 5.9 4.2
LSD       1 % 7.6 6.8 7.0 5.4 7.8 7.8 5.7
B: Salinity concentrations :
0.2  % NaCl 53.4 50.7 52.0 52.0 57.6 63.0 61.1 60.6
0.5  % NaCl 51.3 50.1 52.2 143.2 57.7 67.7 65.7 63.7
0.8  % NaCl 54.8 54.8 52.1 53.8 62.5 71.9 68.0 67.5
1.1 % NaCl 43.8 45.5 46.4 45.2 52.6 57.6 54.6 55.0
1.4 % NaCl 42.0 43.5 37.2 40.9 48.0 50.9 49.7 49.5
1.7 % NaCl 42.5 41.6 40.2 41.3 47.2 51.6 48.4 49.1
2.0 % NaCl 37.7 33.4 31.6 34.2 35.3 38.6 36.4 36.7
2.3 % NaCl 33.0 32.3 30.4 31.8 34.6 35.9 33.6 34.7
2.6 % NaCl 29.1 29.3 28.0 28.8 31.2 33.9 30.7 31.9
2.9 % NaCl 26.7 26.2 21.7 24.8 28.1 29.6 28.9 28.9
F. test ** ** ** N.S ** ** ** **
LSD     5 % 9.0 8.1 8.4 6.4 9.2 9.3 4.7
LSD     1 % 12.0 10.7 11.1 8.5 12.3 12.4 6.2
A ´  B ** * * N.S ** N.S N .S **

 

 

Table 9:  Average fresh weight (g) /plant as affected by Atriplex species and salinity concentration during different cuttings as well as average of forage yield of 1999/2000 and 2000/2001 seasons.

 

Treatments

Cuttings of 1999/2000 season Cuttings of 2000/2001 season
1st 2 nd 3 rd Total 4 th 5 th 6 th Total
Atriplex species :
A.nummularia 4500.1 4662.8 4984.6 14147.5 4775.4 3203.1 2951.8 10930.3
A.halimus 3218.2 3363.8 3233.5 9815.5 3742.1 2531.6 2570.6 8844.3
A.leucoclada 3406.9 3573.1 3361.6 10577.6 3616.8 2860.9 2823.4 9301.1
A.canscense 1475.7 1568.9 1442.0 4486.6 1717.3 1299.5 1264.3 4281.1
F. test ** ** ** N . S ** ** ** **
LSD       5 % 13.8 15.1 14.2 14.5 8.9 8.1 10.9
LSD       1 % 18.3 20.0 18.8 19.2 11.8 10.7 14.8
B: Salinity concentrations
0.2 % NaCl 1906.3 1864.0 1951.1 5721.4 1982.6 1557.6 1337.9 4878.1
0.5 % NaCl 1953.0 1901.0 1808.2 5898.2 1906.4 1504.1 1433.0 4843.5
0.8 % NaCl 1911.9 2026.2 2077.3 6015.4 2173.6 1551.2 1499.0 5223.8
1.1 % NaCl 1600.3 1694.9 1552.2 4847.4 1757.0 1190.5 1143.7 4091.2
1.4 % NaCl 1247.2 1448.3 1420.4 4115.9 1588.1 972.3 962.7 3523.1
1.7 % NaCl 1283.3 1352.9 1376.6 4012.8 1370.3 921.8 924.6 3216.7
2.0 % NaCl 798.9 918.6 879.5 2597.0 923.4 642.6 691.4 2257.4
2.3 % NaCl 713.8 724.9 785.0 2223.7 819.5 591.7 631.1 2042.3
2.6 % NaCl 623.5 639.6 645.2 1908.3 683.0 503.4 517.7 1704.1
2.9 % NaCl 565.4 598.2 526.2 1689.8 647.7 459.9 469.0 1576.6
F. test ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **
LSD     5 % 21.8 23.8 22.4 12.5 22.9 14.0 12.8 9.1
LSD     1 % 28.9 31.6 29.8 16.5 30.4 18.6 17.0 12.0
A ´  B N.S N.S N.S ** N.S N .S N .S *

 

 

Table 10: Average dry weight (g) /plant as affected by Atriplex species and salinity concentrations in both seasons.

Treatments Cuttings of 1999/2000 Cuttings of 2000/2001              
1st 2 nd 3 rd Total 4th 5 th 6 ththt Total
Atriplex species :
A.nummularia 1535.0 1596.9 1693.6 4825.5 1717.2 1304.8 1283.0 4304.9
A.halimus 1071.2 1126.1 1080.1 3277.4 1299.2 9.74.8 1047.0 3321.0
A.leucoclada 1222.0 1260.4 1232.3 2528.5 1327.1 1084.9 1102.2 3514.3
A.canscense 739.9 800.3 766.8 2307.0 823.0 594.7 588.6 2006.4
F. test ** ** ** N.S ** ** ** **
LSD       5 % 5.0 4.9 6.1 4.7 3.6 3.8 4.4
LSD       1 % 6.7 6.5 8.1 6.2 4.7 5.1 6.0
B: Salinity concentrations :
0.2 % NaCl 662.0 645.1 661.5 1968.5 699.2 628.3 576.4 1904.0
0.5 % NaCl 703.9 695.0 607.7 2035.4 706.1 624.4 632.3 1962.8
0.8 % NaCl 720.7 762.9 876.1 2359.8 820.3 621.8 639.9 2082.0
1.1 % NaCl 591.4 600.6 563.1 1755.1 649.3 482.5 503.6 1635.3
1.4 % NaCl 444.5 508.2 494.8 1447.6 582.1 375.8 420.8 1378.7
1.7 % NaCl 450.8 486.9 461.7 1399.4 513.3 360.2 351.9 1225.3
2.0 % NaCl 255.6 322.1 340.9 918.7 355.6 255.9 268.4 879.9
2.3 % NaCl 266.7 284.5 299.8 851.0 311.3 218.0 233.3 762.6
2.6 % NaCl 245.5 246.1 252.8 744.4 270.8 197.8 213.5 682.1
2.9 % NaC 227.0 232.1 214.5 673.6 258.6 194.6 180.7 663.9
F. test ** ** ** N.S ** ** ** **
LSD     5 % 8.0 7.7 9.7 7.4 5.6 6.1 3.3
LSD     1 % 10.6 10.2 12.8 9.8 7.5 8.1 4.3
Interaction A´B ** ** * N.S * N.S N.S **

 

 

Table 11: Means of protein percentage in leaves and stems as affected by Atriplex species and salinity concentration over the sixth cuts.

Treatments Protein % in leaves Protein % in stems Treatments Protein % in leaves Protein % in stems
A: species : A: species
A. nummularia 13.7 1.3 A. leucoclada 11.1 1.4
A.  halimus 12.0 1.2 A. canescens 6.7 0.7
F- test ** ** ** **
LSD 5 % 0.7 0.1 0.7 0.1
LSD 1% 0.9 0.2 0.9 0.2
B: Salinity concentration B: Salinity concentration
0.2%NaCl 17.4 1.2 1.7 % NaCl 10.2 1.1
0.5%NaCl 19.0 1.7  2.0 % NaCl 7.7 0.6
0.8%NaCl 14.0 2.1  2.3 % NaCl 6.1 0.8
1.1%NaCl 13.7 1.6  2.6 % NaCl 4.1 0.6
1.4%NaCl 10.9 1.1  2.9 % NaCl 4.6 0.4
F- test ** ** ** **
LSD 5 % 1.1 0.2 1.1 0.2
LSD 1% 1.5 0.3 1.5 0.3
Interaction

A ´ B

 

**

 

NS

 

**

 

NS

 

Conclusion

According to the relevant results of the present investigation, it could be inferred that Atriplex nummularia is the most suitable for cultivation under the local environmental conditions of this trial among the different species studied using bottom stem internode cuttings for asexual reproduction. It was, also, noticed that growth status of the plant was improved as salinity concentration was increased up to 0.8% NaCl. Increasing salinity concentration to the level of 1.1% NaCl caused some decreases however, these decreases did not reach the level of significance in the    two seasons. On the contrary, increasing salinity concentration more than 1.1% NaCl caused some tremendous losses in the growth status and forage production of the plant.

 

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