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Agronomy, Vol. 10, Pages 1715: Combined Effects of Induced Water Deficit and Foliar Application of Silicon on the Gas Exchange of Tomatoes for Processing
Agronomy doi: 10.3390/agronomy10111715
Authors: Diogo Henrique Morato de Moraes Marcio Mesquita Amanda Magalhães Bueno Rilner Alves Flores Henrique Fonseca Elias de Oliveira Frederico Simões Raimundo de Lima Renato de Mello Prado Rafael Battisti
The beneficial effects of silicon (Si) on plants have been widely reported for its fruit qualitative improvements, growth gains, and protection against abiotic and biotic stresses. This study aimed to evaluate the combined effect of soil water potential (&Psi;s) (&minus;30 and &minus;60 kPa) and the foliar application of Si (0.0 (control), 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, and 4.0 g L&minus;1) in the development of tomatoes grown in a greenhouse. We evaluated the biometric parameters and gas exchange in three periods (20, 34, and 48 days after planting). The rates of transpiration (E), stomatal conductance (gs), and net photosynthesis assimilation (An) were lower when the plants were subjected to water deficit. The foliar application of Si attenuated the effect of the water deficit in both levels applied to the crop. A high response was observed at &minus;60 kPa, regardless of the evaluated period. However, a significant effect was not observed on the relative chlorophyll index and biomass accumulation when Si was applied. A foliar application up to 2.8 g L&minus;1 promotes increases in An,gs, and E. It is highlighted that Si can promote improvements in gas exchange when plants are affected by a water deficit.