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Journal of Research in Ecology

ISSN No: Print: 2319 –1546; Online: 2319– 1554

An International Scientific Research Journal

Original Research

Journal of Research in Ecology

Agronomic traits of forage maize (Zea mays L.) in response to spraying of nanofertilizers, ascorbic and salicylic acid Authors: Parya Saedpanah, Khosro Mohammadi and Farzad Fayaz

Institution: Department of Agronomy, Sanandaj Branch, Islamic Azad University, Sanandaj, Iran.

Corresponding author: Khosro Mohammadi

ABSTRACT: Only limited work has been focused on the simultaneous evaluation of foliar application of nano nutrients, salicylic and ascorbic acid on agronomic traits of forage corn. Therefore, to evaluate these treatments, the split plot experiment based on RCBD with three replications was used in this experiment. Foliar spraying of nanofertilizers Fe, Zn, K, NPK and control (without fertilizers) were arranged in main plots. The subplots consisted of the foliar spraying of corn with growth regulators including ascorbic acid (2%) and salicylic acid (2%) and control. Results showed that application of nano iron chelate increased leaf chlorophyll by 29%, 20%, 20% and 16% compared with control, NPK, potassium and zinc respectively. The highest leaf chlorophyll was observed in the salicylic acid (47.85) and lowest belonged to control treatment (44.38). The highest and lowest plant height belonged to nano iron chelate (2.90 m) and control (2.35) treatments, respectively. The highest value of stem and total dry weight were achieved when NPK fertilizers were applied and the highest leaf dry weight was obtained in nano iron chelate treatments. Salicylic acid caused a 3% increase in leaf dry weight compared to the control. Nano zinc spraying increased plant height by 23.6 m (5%) compared to the control. Among the growth regulators, the highest crude protein was observed in salicylic acid treatments. Keywords: Growth regulators, Iron, Nanoparticles, Potassium, Zinc

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Article Citation: Parya Saedpanah, Khosro Mohammadi and Farzad Fayaz Agronomic traits of forage maize (Zea mays L.) in response to spraying of nanofertilizers, ascorbic and salicylic acid Journal of Research in Ecology (2016) 4(2): 359-365 Web Address: documents/EC0194.pdf

Journal of Research in Ecology An International Scientific Research Journal

Dates: Received: 15 Nov 2016

Accepted: 30 Nov 2016

Published: 12 Dec 2016

This article is governed by the Creative Commons Attribution License ( licenses/by/4.0), which gives permission for unrestricted use, non-commercial, distribution and reproduction in all medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

359-365| JRE | 2016 | Vol 4 | No 2

Saedpanah et al., 2016


biosynthesis of cell wall and increased the synthesis of

Maize also known as corn (Zea mays L.) is considered many pigments like carotenoid and xanthophylls. It also not only as the main diet for human food, but also it is increases the amount of chlorophyll pigments in wheat mostly grown to feed livestock, as forage or silage. Forage and mung. Also, chlorophyll a/b ratio decreased in wheat corn is a C4 plant and is one of the most important food plantlets treated by ascorbic acid (Moharekar et al., 2003; resources for animal husbandry in Iran. The nutrients Pavet et al., 2005; Barth et al., 2006). No work is focused on the effect of simultaneous (micro and macro) had a great role in corn‟s growth and forage quality. The uptake ability of micronutrients will evaluation of foliar application of nano nutrients, salicylic be reduced under calcareous soils, loss of organic matter and ascorbic acid on the agronomic traits of forage corn. and more application of phosphorus fertilizers (Safyan et This study was therefore conducted to assess the possible al., 2012). There are several forms for supplying nutrients role of these materials in improving forage corn for plants. In the agricultural systems, nanotechnology can performance and its productivity under field conditions. increase the crop growth and save the energy to access a better and economic production (Rameshaiah et al., MATERIALS AND METHODS The field experiment was conducted during 2015). Spraying of nano-fertilizer compared to chemical fertilizers required the low cost and less quantity. Among spring and summer 2015 in the research field of Islamic micronutrients, iron and zinc are the most important Azad University of Sanandaj located at the Kurdistan nutrient and its necessity has been demonstrated for corn provinces of Iran. Soil (depth of 0–30) samples were production (Potarzycki and Grzebisz, 2009). The iron has taken in order to determine the physical and chemical an important role in biological redox system; without iron properties. Soil properties of field were: pH 7.21 (1:2.5 in a plant can‟t produce chlorophyll, and it stimulates the water), 1.19% Organic Matter (OM), 0.20% total N, 8.54 -1 -1 + oxygen transfer in biological nitrogen fixation. Also, zinc mg kg Olsen P, 271 mg kg extractable K Ammonium -1 -1 is the second most abundant transition metal, important acetate (NH4CH3CO2), 0.912 mg kg Zn and 62.3 mg kg

for membrane integrity and phytochrome activities Fe and clay-loam texture (29% sand, 41% clay and 30% (Parsad et al., 2012). Nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium silt). The split plot experiment based on The Randomized are the constituents of proteins in the ripening and Complete Block Design (RCBD) with three replications reproductive parts of a maize plant. Various enzymes, was used in this experiment. The main plots consisted of coenzymes, nucleic acids, phytochromes and chlorophyll five foliar spraying of nano fertilizers included iron also plays an important role in the biochemical processes chelate, zinc, potassium and NPK fertilizers at the rates of -1 of the maize (Ibrahim and Kandil, 2007; Sepaskhah and 2g L and control (without fertilizers). The subplots consisted of the foliar spraying of corn with growth Barzegar, 2010).

Plant growth regulators such as salicylic and regulators including ascorbic acid (2%), salicylic acid ascorbic acid played positive effect in increasing the (2%) and control. Fifty percent of fertilizers were foliar growth and yield of many cereals including wheat and sprayed at V10 (10 leaves with collars visible) and the rest maize at lower concentration (Khan et al., 2003). Salicylic were sprayed at R1 (silking stage). Cultivars were planted acid increased the number of flowers, pods per plant and on “Bolson” hybrid (FAO 600) with medium early with grain yield of soybean (Coronado et al., 1998). Salicylic high silage yield and wide adaptability. Sowing was and ascorbic acid has a positive role on physiological carried out on April 19, 2015. Main plot size was 5×20 m processes such as cell division, plant growth and the and spaces between main plots were two meters (Fig. 1). 360

Journal of Research in Ecology (2016) 4(2): 359–365

Saedpanah et al., 2016 leaf chlorophyll content was measured by using a portable chlorophyll meter (Minolta-SPAD-502 Model). Five readings per plant were obtained from the medium part of the completely expanded leaf, at 1-2 cm from the leaf edge (Fig. 2). For measuring dry matter (leaf, stem and total dry matter), the sampling area per plot was 2×3 m, at silking stage the sampling area was cut at the ground level. Plant samples (Fig. 2) were oven-dried at 60°C for eight days to achieve a constant dry mass. Plant height was taken at the silking stage by measuring height of five plants from the four inner rows of each subplot. Protein concentrations in forage were measured by using the methods described in Chattha et al. (2015). The crude protein







nitrogen × 6.25. The data collected in this study were subjected to analysis of variance (ANOVA) using the general linear model procedure in the Statistical Analysis System and the means comparison was done through an LSD test Figure 1. Different growth stages of forage maize in our experiment. using a SAS statistical package. Nitrogen fertilizers (urea) were applied twice at sowing RESULTS AND DISCUSSION and V8 stages.

The analysis of variance showed that leaf

At the R1 stage (3 days after second spraying) chlorophyll was affected by spraying nano-fertilizers (N)

Figure 2. Measurement of leaf chlorophyll by chlorophyll meter (left) and collected samples for dry biomass measurement (right) Journal of Research in Ecology (2016) 4(2): 359-365


Saedpanah et al., 2016 Table 1: ANOVA significance levels for forage corn traits affected by fertilizers and growth regulators. S.O.V Block




50.4 ns

Plant height (m) 0.07 ns

Total dry biomass (kg ha-1) 2651256.1 *

Leaf dry weight (kg ha-1) 1580900.1 ns

Stem dry weight (kg ha-1) 17062820.5 **

Crude protein (%) 1.08 ns

4 317.8 * 0.13 ** 4216029.1 ** 27619660.1 ** 1099769.8 ns 0.47 ns Fertilizers ** ns ns ** ns 2 55.2 0.02 5126703.1 2016217.1 1825599 5.91 ** Growth regulators 8 3.1 ns 0.009 ns 3939703.1 ns 340793.1 ns 2057708 ns 1.06 ns Interaction 20 57.2 0.009 2458973 238249.9 8753022 0.82 Error 6.02 3.95 10.41 26.53 27.08 2.35 C.V „ns‟ indicates no significance and „***, **, *‟ indicates significance at P levels of 0.001, 0.01 and 0.05, respectively. and growth regulators (N) (Table 1). Mean comparisons al. (2003) demonstrated that salicylic acid activated the specified that nano iron chelate increased leaf chlorophyll synthesis of carotenoids and xanthophylls and also compared to other fertilizers and control. Application of increased the amount of deep oxidation with a nano iron chelate increased leaf chlorophyll by 29%, 20%, concomitant decrease in chlorophyll pigments and 20% and 16% on compared with the control, NPK, chlorophyll a/b ratio in crops. potassium and zinc, respectively (Table 2). The highest

Nano fertilizers (N) significantly affected plant

leaf chlorophyll was observed with the salicylic acid height, leaf dry weight, stem dry weight and total dry (47.85) and lowest belonged to the control treatment biomass, but growth regulators (G) only has a significant (44.38). It has been demonstrated that iron has a great role effect on leaf dry weight, and interaction of N×G has not a in





photosynthesis significant effect on plant height, total, leaf and stem dry

improvement and plant growth regulation (Jin et al., weight (Table 1). The highest and lowest plant height was 2008). Iron deficiency always causes loss of chlorophyll belonged to nano iron chelate (2.90 m) and control (2.35) and distraction of chloroplast structure. Also, Farahni et treatments, respectively (Table 2). The highest value of al. (2015) showed that nano iron has the highest stem and total dry weight was achieved when NPK concentration of chlorophyll in comparison to the other fertilizers were applied and the highest leaf dry weight treatments. In agreement with our results Zhou et al. was obtained in nano iron chelate treatment (Table 2). (1999) and Khan et al. (2003), showed that photosynthetic Salicylic acid caused a 3% increase in leaf dry weight pigments and photosynthetic rate were increased in corn compared to control. Nano zinc spraying increased plant and soybean with salicylic acid application. Moharekar et height by 23.6 m (5%) compared to the control (Table 2). Table 2. Effects of fertilizer spraying on agronomic traits and quality of forage corn Total dry Leaf dry Stem dry Leaf chlorophyll Plant height Crude protein Spraying biomass weight weigh (spad number) (m) (%) -1 -1 -1 (kg ha ) (kg ha ) (kg ha ) Nano fertilizers 5660.5 d 3396.1 c 2250.3 c 10.82 a Control 39.1 b 2.3 c b a b a a 7730.1 5024.3 2700.3 10.85 a Iron 55.2 2.9 a b a b b 8160.8 4488.2 3672.4 10.96 a NPK 43.9 2.4 b b b b b 43.7 2.4 7750.6 4650.3 3100.8 10.84 a Potassium c b b b b 7150.3 4147.6 3000.3 10.75 a Zink 46.1 2.5 Growth regulators 10.12 b 44.3 b 2.5 a 7270.5 a 4272.3 b 3000.1 a Control a a a a a 11.27 a 7280.6 4441.4 2839.6 Salicylic acid 47.8 2.5 a b a b a 11.14 a 7320.2 4320.5 3000.9 Ascorbic acid 44.7 2.5 The treatment means with the same letter are not significantly different using LSD at 5 % 362

Journal of Research in Ecology (2016) 4(2): 359-365

Saedpanah et al., 2016 Findings of Prasad et al. (2012) demonstrated CONCLUSION that nano Zn fertilizers increased the plant height of

Growth and quality of corn were affected by

peanut as compared with chemical Zn fertilizer. They nano fertilizers and growth regulators especially iron, suggested that nano-scale zinc is absorbed by plants to a NPK and salicylic acid application. It seems that the use larger extent as compared to chemical form. The positive of iron nano and NPK particles causes increase in biomass effects of foliar spray of iron and NPK on dry matter as and crude protein content. Before the recommendation of observed in the present study have also been reported in these materials, additional testing is required and different studies for rice, safflower, chickpea and soybean influence of the nano-particles in forage products must be (Sultana et al., 2001; Khan et al., 2003; Gadallah, 2000; evaluated. Also, more experiments are necessary to fully Dehnavy et al., 2009). Increase in growth as a result of understand the suitable timing, form and rate of application of nano-particles, possibly due to the in- application and also the determination of the critical creased photosynthetic and other metabolic activity which nutrient range in the forage to enhance the efficacy of leads to an increase in various plant metabolites responsi- these micronutrients. Finally, the results hint that nano ble for cell division and elongation was as suggested by fertilizers and salicylic acid may, in future, find Hatwar et al. (2003). Fariduddin et al. (2003) observed application for improving corn growth and yield in field maximum increase in dry matter accumulation at a con- areas. Future work may focus on evaluating these centration of 10-5M salicylic acid, supplemented to the treatments on other hybrids and cultivars. Furthermore, leaves of Brassica juncea but. Khan et al. (2003) also these results may be tested under varying soil and climatic reported that application of salicylic acid to the leaves of conditions in further studies. corn and soybean accelerated their leaf area and dry mass production.


Analysis of variance showed that crude protein, Barth C, De Tullio M and Conklin PL. (2006). The role was significantly influenced by the spraying of growth of ascorbic acid in the control of flowering time and the regulators, the fertilizers and interaction NĂ—G has not onset of senescence. Journal of Botany, 57(8):1657-1665. produced a significant effect on crude protein (Table 1). However, the nano-iron and NPK treatment gave the highest crude protein, as compared with the other sources (Table 2). In agreement with our results, Ghafari and Razmju (2015) reported that the nano-iron oxide produced the highest grain protein content, followed by iron sulfate

Chattha MU, Sana MA, Munir H, Ashraf U, Haq I and Zamir S. (2015). Exogenous application of plant growth promoting substances enhances the growth, yield and quality of maize (Zea mays L.). Plant Knowledge Journal, 4(1):1-6.

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Journal of Research in Ecology (2016) 4(2): 359-365


Agronomic traits of forage maize (Zea mays L.) in response to spraying of nanofertilizers, ascorbic  

Only limited work has been focused on the simultaneous evaluation of foliar application of nano nutrients, salicylic and ascorbic acid on ag...

Agronomic traits of forage maize (Zea mays L.) in response to spraying of nanofertilizers, ascorbic  

Only limited work has been focused on the simultaneous evaluation of foliar application of nano nutrients, salicylic and ascorbic acid on ag...