Gas exchange and growth response of young Ficus carica L. plants to water deficit and relief
We evaluated the effects of three different irrigation regimes on plant water status, leaf gas exchange and plant biomass in a seven week experiment. Three treatments were established whereby one-year-old potted fig (Ficus carica L., 'Dottato') plants received about 120% (full irrigation, FI), 60% (water deficit 1, WD1), and 40% (water deficit 2, WD2) of their water consumption. Four weeks after the beginning of the experiment, water stress was relieved by supplying water until substrate saturation, then previous irrigation regimes were reestablished. Differences in stem water potential (SWP) were significant between FI and WD2 during deficit periods, but not during the two weeks after relief. One week after the beginning of the experiment, differences in stomatal conductance were significant between FI and deficit irrigated plants. Similarly to SWP, no differences in leaf gas exchange were measured during the two weeks after relief. At the end of the experiment the dry biomass of WD1 and WD2 plants was 85 and 79% of FI plants, respectively. These differences were mainly due to the higher leaf dry weight of FI with respect to WD1 and WD2 plants (140 and 203% of WD1 and WD2, respectively).
Caruso, G., Gennai, C., Ugolini, F. and Gucci, R. 2017. Gas exchange and growth response of young Ficus carica L. plants to water deficit and relief. Acta Hort. (ISHS) 1173:157-162
net photosynthetic rate, water stress, stomatal conductance, vegetative growth