Screening of Fe-Deficiency Tolerance in Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus L.) Through Hydroponic Culture
Screening for Fe deficiency tolerance in okra (Abelmoschus esculentus) Bangladeshi genotypes (‘BARI-1’, ‘Local variety’, ‘Orca Onamica’, and ‘Prince’) were studied based on different morphological and physiological parameters. Number of leaves, shoot height and weight were significantly reduced in ‘Orca Onamica’ and ‘Prince’, whereas ‘BARI-1’ and ‘Local variety’ did not show prominent decrease in the aforesaid growth parameters under Fe deficiency. Again, ‘Orca Onamica’ and ‘Prince’ showed significantly decreased root length and root biomass under Fe deficiency. In contrast, these parameters were unchangeable in ‘BARI’-1 and ‘Local variety’ in Fe shortage compared to controls. Furthermore, Fe deficiency caused severe decrease in chlorophyll (a and b) and Fe concentrations in leaves of ‘Orca Onamica’ and ‘Prince’ grown on hydroponic culture. In contrast, chlorophyll (a and b) and Fe concentrations were not significantly decreased in ‘BARI-1’ and ‘Local variety’ due to Fe deficiency. Based on these findings, tolerance to Fe deficiency in these okra cultivars can be categorized as: tolerant (‘BARI-1’ and ‘Local’), and sensitive (‘Orca Onamica’ and ‘Prince’). The ranking can be applied in plant breeding program and may have great advantage over conventional methods. This study also demonstrates the effectiveness of hydroponic culture as an efficient method to screen Fe-efficient crop plants.
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