Performance of Chia on Different Sowing Dates: Characteristics of Growth Rate, Leaf Area Index, Shoot Dry Matter Partitioning and Grain Yield

  •  Patrícia Carine Hüller Goergen    
  •  Isabel Lago    
  •  Angelica Durigon    
  •  Gabriel Felipe Maboni Roth    
  •  Lúcio Gabriel Scheffel    
  •  Taís Slim    


The objective of this study was to comparatively determine the characteristics of growth rate, leaf area index, shoot dry mass partitioning and grain yield of chia plants (Salvia hispanica L.) on different sowing dates. A field experiment was conducted in the crop year of 2016/2017 in five sowing dates (09/22/16, 10/28/16, 01/03/17, 02/08/17 and 03/24/17) with a randomized complete block design and four replicates. Plant growth was determined through field samplings to determine the dry matter mass and leaf area performed every 15 days. The following physiological indexes were calculated: relative growth rate, absolute growth rate, net assimilation rate, leaf area ratio, specific leaf area and leaf mass ratio. To weekly evaluate plant height, ten plants per plot were marked after emergence, and the final height was considered when plants reached physiological maturity. A useful area of 2.10 m² per plot was collected for evaluating grain yield. The physiological indexes indicated that at earlier sowing dates there is a greater plant growth, either in shoot dry matter mass, height and leaf area index. The leaf area index of branches is progressively increased with plant development and contributes significantly to total leaf area index of chia plants in all studied sowing dates. The main stem represents between 60 and 70% of the shoot dry matter accumulated in the early sowing dates, and between 40 and 50% in late sowing. The best sowing date in terms of grain yield is 01/03/17.

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