2013 Volume 16 Issue 1 Pages 77-83
Rapid development after emergence is important for seedling establishment and early vegetative growth, especially at a low planting density or inferior environmental conditions. This study was conducted to understand the varietal difference in the growth parameters during the seedling stage in soybean. Twenty-seven soybean varieties originating from six countries were examined in 2009 and 2010. The pots were arranged in a completely random block design with 5 replications (10 pots per variety), and the seedlings were sampled at 14 and 28 days after sowing (DAS). The shoot dry weight at 14 and 28 DAS was highly correlated with seed size, cotyledon digestion, and leaf area. However, no positive correlation was found between shoot dry weight and photosynthetic rate at 28 DAS. Chamame, a Japanese cultivar, with the largest seed size grew rapidly, and showed the heaviest shoot dry weight, greatest cotyledon digestion, fast leaf expansion and high photosynthetic rate. However, Moyashimame, a medium-seed-size cultivar, also grew rapidly with a high photosynthetic rate. Some varieties such as Tachinagaha (Japan), Hefeng (China), Parana and Pérola (Brazil), had a large or medium seed size, and high photosynthetic rate but showed a relatively small leaf area and light shoot dry weight. These results suggested that big seeds with rapid cotyledon digestion developed a wider leaf area and therefore large dry matter production, indicating that the conversion of stored energy was more important than the leaf photosynthetic activity for early growth.
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