Seed Germination and Initial Growth of Quinoa Seedlings Under Water and Salt Stress

  •  Geovana Facco Barbieri    
  •  Raquel Stefanello    
  •  Janine Farias Menegaes    
  •  Janete Denardi Munareto    
  •  Ubirajara Russi Nunes    


Excessive amounts of salts and soil water deficiency interfere on seed germination and the full development of several crops. The objective of this research was to evaluate the effect of water stress and salinity on the germination process and initial growth of quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa Willd.) seedlings. In the first experiment, two quinoa seed lots with different physiological conditions were distributed on paper soaked in aqueous solution containing polyethylene glycol PEG-6000 in osmotic potentials corresponding to 0.0; -0.1; -0.2; -0.3 and -0.4 MPa and held at 20 °C under 8 hours of light exposition. In the second experiment, solutions of sodium chloride (NaCl), potassium chloride (KCl), calcium chloride (CaCl2) and magnesium chloride (MgCl2) were used to simulate the effect of salinity using the osmotic potentials, temperature and light conditions previously described. Assessed parameters were the germination percentage, first count, length and dry mass of seedlings. There was a reduction in quinoa germination percentage, first seed count and seedling length as the osmotic potential decreased in CaCl2, NaCl, KCl, MgCl2 and PEG-6000 solutions. The quinoa seeds exhibited higher tolerance to NaCl and KCl salts in the germination process and initial seedling growth. The progressive reduction of the osmotic potential induced by salts NaCl, KCl, CaCl2, MgCl2 and PEG-6000 negatively affects seed germination and initial growth of quinoa seedlings.

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