Effect of Bio-fertilizer and Salicylic Acid on Some Physiological Traits of Melon under Salinity Stress

Document Type : Research Article


Department of Horticulture Science and Engineering, High Educational Complex of Torbat-e Jam


Introduction: Melon (Cucumis melo L.) is one of the most important vegetables in Cucurbitaceae family and one of the most important economic crops in the Torbat-e Jam. Growth and yield of agricultural crops are affected by biotic and abiotic environmental stresses. Salinity stress can be one of the most important environmental factors limiting the yield of plants, especially in arid and semi-arid regions. It has been reported that by application of bio-fertilizers, root and shoot dry weight and nitrogen concentration in alfalfa increased under salt stress. Sarabi et al (44) in a study of different genotypes of melons under salinity stress reported that salinity stress increases soluble sugars and proline content and decreases photosynthetic pigments. Growth-promoting bacteria can help plants under stress conditions by stabilizing atmospheric nitrogen, increasing the accessibility of nutrients, and interfering by the production of plant hormones such as auxin, cytokinin, and gibberellins. Soliman et al. (49) also reported that growth-promoting bacteria increase the absorption of elements, especially nitrogen, in Acacia saligana. Basilio et al. (7) showed that growth-promoting bacteria increase plant height and yield of wheat. The use of salicylic acid to create plant reactions to environmental stresses has been suggested. Raghami et al (39) reported that salicylic acid improves vegetative indexes and photosynthetic pigments in eggplant under salt stress. It has been reported that salicylic acid treatment increased K in wheat under salt stress. Due to the expansion of saline soils as well as the reduction of fresh water resources, the purpose of this experiment is to better establish melon seedlings under adverse environmental conditions and to maintain and develop this valuable crop.
Materials and Methods: In order to study the effect of biological fertilizers and salicylic acid on physiological parameters and growth of Khatooni melon under salinity stress conditions, a factorial experiment was conducted based on completely randomized design with three replications in Torbat-e-Jam University. Salicylic acid treatment was selected at two levels, without (SA0) and one mM (SA1) salicylic acid. Bacteria treatments were including Azotobacter (B1), Azospirilium (B2), Azotobacter and Azospirilum (B3) and without inoculation (B0) and salinity treatments were prepared in five concentrations: control (S0), 50 (S1), 100 (S2), 150 (S3) and 200 (S4) mM of sodium chloride.
Results and Discussion: Interaction effects of salinity, salicylic acid and bacteria showed, proline content was increased by salinity stress. The highest of proline content was obtained by combination of 200 mM salinity, one mM of salicylic acid and Azetobacter + Azospirilum (S4 SA1 B3) and the minimum of it was recorded in contorol (S0 SA0 B0). Under salinity conditions, the accumulation of compatible solutions such as proline, glycine, betaine and other organic solutions in the plant occurs, which play an important role in protecting the plant against the harmful effects of stress. On the other hand, the increase in proline content by growth-promoting bacteria may be due to an increase in the absorption of nutrients, especially nitrogen, because proline has a nitrogenous structure.
Without salinity stress no significant difference observed between salicylic acid treatments on soluble sugars, but soluble sugars content were significantly increased by increasing salinity stress. The maximum and minimum of soluble sugars content were recorded in combination 200 mM salinity and one mM of salicylic acid (S4 SA1) and control (S0 SA0) respectively. Plants try to overcome salinity stress by producing organic compounds that are osmotically active such as soluble sugars.
It has been reported that the use of salicylic acid in eggplant and barley under salinity stress has increased the production of soluble sugars, which is consistent with the results of this study. In general, accumulation of proline and soluble sugars content might be due to increased synthesis and decreased degradation under stress conditions. According to the results, photosynthetic pigments and relative water content percentage (RWC %) were decreased under salinity stress. Simple effects of salicylic acid (SA1) and bacteria treatments especially combination of bacteria (B3) significantly improved Chlorophyll a, b, carotenoids and RWC. Sarabi et al. (43) reported that chlorophyll content, carotenoids and RWC were decreased in melon under salinity stress. Kheirizadeh Arough et al (29) reported that application of bio-fertilizers and nano zinc oxid increased content of chlorophyll a, chlorophyll b and carotenoids in Triticale under salinity conditions.   
Conclusion: Based on the obtained results in this study, we can use Azotobacter and Azospirillum together for seed inoculation and spraying with salicylic acid for obtaining better growth and yield under salt stress.  


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  • Receive Date: 20 July 2019
  • Revise Date: 22 October 2019
  • Accept Date: 16 November 2019
  • First Publish Date: 21 May 2020