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Agronomy Journal Abstract -

Survival and Growth of Cotton Plants Damaged by Windblown Sand1


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 63 No. 4, p. 638-642
    Received: Dec 28, 1970

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  1. D. W. Fryreat2



Cotton seedlings are easily damaged or destroyed by exposure to the abrasive action of windblown sand. The survival and recovery of damaged plants should be related to the moisture stress at the time of injury and the cnange in moisture stress following injury. Plants were grown in a greenhouse, exposed to windblown sand inj ury at 3 or 9 days of age, and returned to the greenhouse. The soil moisture content at exposure time was 7 (dry) or 11% (wet). The moisture content was constant or reversed at 3, 9, or 27 days after exposure.

Cotton plant leaf area, height, and dry matter production (at 50 days of age), were significantly reduced by exposure to abrasive injury. Plant growth was delayed from 8 to 25 days, and the plants that recovered were shorter but had more leaf area per unit of height than plants not exposed. Plant survival for 3-day-oId plants iibraded with blowing sand was 62 and 65% for a soil :it 7 (dry) and 11% (wet) moisture, respectively. Plant survival for 9-day-old plants exposed to abrasive injury ivas 78 and 63% for the dry and wet soil respectively. Decreasing the soil moisture content of a wet soil 9 or 27 ilays after 3-day-old plants were exposed significantly decreased survival. When 9-day-old plants in a dry soil were exposed, increasing the soil moisture 3 days after exposure significantly decreased survival, but decreasing :he soil moisture of a wet soil 9 or 27 days after exposure significantly increased plant survival.

Plant tissue destruction was observed as the leaves and hypocotyl became dark green or black. Thin sections of the tissue revealed a compression of the damaged cells rather than an actual abrading away of the plant material.

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