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Leaf Water Potential of Differentially Salinized Plants 1

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Abstract

Water and osmotic potential energies were measured with thermocouple psychrometers, at intervals during a 4-week period, in growing leaves of bean (Phaseolus vulgaris, var. Blue Lake) and barley (Hordeum vulgare, var. Liberty) plants having roots equally split between 2 differentially salinized nutrient solutions. The osmotic potentials of plants with half their roots in saline solutions were about halfway between the osmotic potentials of plants grown in nonsaline solutions and those grown in saline solutions. By the end of the 4-week measurement period, the beans and barley were almost mature. The final dry weights of shoots of plants with half their roots in saline solutions were about halfway between the dry weights of the shoots of plants grown in nonsaline solutions and the dry weights of those in saline solutions. The results obtained showed that the degree of osmotic adjustment and the rate of growth were functions of the proportion of the root system exposed to saline conditions.

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