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Micronutrient and hydro priming of seed to overcome salt stress during germination in cumin (Cuminum cyminum L.)
In production of medicinal plants, seed germination is a very important problem. The treated seeds (control, hydropriming and Zn2SO4) of Cumin (Cuminum cyminum L.) were evaluated at germination and seedling growth for tolerance to salt (NaCl and Na2SO4) conditions at the same water potentials of 0.0, –0.3, –0.6, –0.9 and –1.2 MPa. Electrical conductivity (EC) values of the NaCl solutions were 0.0, 6.5, 12.7, 18.4 and 23.5 dS.m-1, respectively. The objective of the study was to determine factors responsible for germination and early seedling growth due to salt toxicity or osmotic effect and to optimize the best priming treatment for these stress conditions. Results revealed that germination delayed in both solutions, having variable germination with different priming treatments. Germination, shoot and weight, root and shoot length were higher but mean germination time and abnormal germination percentage were lower in NaCl than Na2SO4 at the same water potential. The root/shoot weight and R/S length increased with increase in osmotic potential in both NaCl and Na2SO4 solutions. NaCl had less inhibitor effect on seedling growth than the germination. It was concluded that inhibition of germination at the same water potential of NaCl and Na2SO4 resulted from salt toxicity rather than osmotic effect. Hydropriming increased germination and seedling growth under salt stress. This protocol has practical importance and could be recommended to farmers to achieve higher germination and uniform emergence under field conditions.
Keywords: Cumin, salt stress; zinc, hydropriming; germination