Salt Tolerance and Suitability of Various Grasses for Saline Roadsides1
- T. D. Hughes,
- J. D. Butler and
- G. D. Sanks2
Forage yields of five grass species: Agropyron cristatum (L.) Gaertn., A. smithii Rydb., Lolium perenne L., Poa pratensis L., and Puccinellia distans (L.) Parl., were studied in soil under greenhouse conditions with NaCl additions of 0; 5,000; 10,000; and 20,000 ppm. Forage yield of P. distans was reduced 23% by addition of 20,000 ppm NaCl, compared to a minimum reduction of 40% for the other grass species. Addition of 30,000 ppm NaCl to soil completely inhibited seedling survival of A. cristatum, A. smithii, Elymus triticoides Buckl., P. distans, Puccinellia lemmoni (Vasey) Scribn., and Sporobolus airoides (Torr.) Torr. Puccinellia airoides (Nutt.) Wats. and Coult. and P. distans were unusually toleran to foliar applications of NaCl in the field.
Mineral analysis of leaf tissue by emission spectroscopy showed that Na concentrations increased as NaCl addition to the soil increased. However, there was no relationship between salt tolerance of the various grasses and amounts of Na in leaf tissue. Increased NaCl addition to the soil resulted in decreased leaf Ca and Mg, but no relationship existed between leaf K and NaCl addition.
P. distans is of value for vegetating saline roadsides.Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.
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