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Effects of three commercial rootstocks on mineral nutrition, fruit yield, and quality of salinized tomato.

Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum Mill. cv. Belladona F1) plants were either self-rooted, selfgrafted, or grafted onto the commercial rootstocks “Beaufort”, “He-Man”, and “Resistar” and grown in a recirculating hydroponic system. Three nutrient solutions differing in NaCl-salinity level (2.5, 5.0, and 7.5 dS m–1, corresponding to 0.3, 22, and 45 mM NaCl) were combined with the five grafting treatments in a two-factorial (3 × 5) experimental design. At the control NaCl level (0.3 mM), fruit yield was not influenced by any of the grafting treatments. However, at low (22 mM NaCl) and moderate (45 mM NaCl) salinity levels, the nongrafted and the self-grafted plants gave significantly lower yields than the plants grafted onto He-Man. The plants grafted onto the other two rootstocks gave higher yields only in comparison with the nongrafted plants, and the differences were significant only at low (Beaufort) or moderate (Resistar) salinity. Yield differences between grafting treatments at low and moderate salinity arose from differences in fruit number per plant, while mean fruit weight was not influenced by grafting or the rootstock. NaCl salinity had no effect on the yield of plants grafted onto He-Man but restricted the yield in all other grafting treatments due to reduction of the mean fruit weight. With respect to fruit quality, salinity enhanced the titratable acidity, the total soluble solids, and the ascorbic acid concentrations, while grafting and rootstocks had no effect on any quality characteristics. The leaf Na concentrations were significantly lower in plants grafted onto the three commercial rootstocks, while those of Cl were increased by grafting onto He-Man but not altered by grafting onto Beaufort or Resistar in comparison with self-grafted or nongrafted plants. Grafting onto the three tested commercial rootstocks significantly reduced the leaf Mg concentrations, resulting in clear Mg-deficiency symptoms 19 weeks after planting.

Savvas, D.; Savva, A.; Ntatsi, G.; Ropokis, A.; Karapanos, I.; Krumbein, A.; Olympios, A. 2011. Effects of three commercial rootstocks on mineral nutrition, fruit yield, and quality of salinized tomato. Journal of Plant Nutrition and Soil Science 174 (1), 154-162.