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Response of Drought-Stressed Grafted and Nongrafted Tomato to Postemergence Metribuzin

  • Sushila Chaudhari (a1), Katherine M. Jennings (a1), David W. Monks (a1), David L. Jordan (a2), Christopher C. Gunter (a1) and Frank J. Louws (a3)...


Tomato grafting is practiced worldwide as an innovative approach to manage stress from drought, waterlogging, insects, and diseases. Metribuzin is a commonly used herbicide in tomato but has potential to cause injury after application if plants are under stress. The influence of metribuzin on grafted tomato under drought-stress has not been studied. Greenhouse experiments were conducted in Raleigh, NC to determine the tolerance of drought-stressed grafted and non-grafted tomato to metribuzin. The tomato cultivar ‘Amelia’ was used as the scion in grafted tomato, and for the non-grafted control. Two hybrid tomato ‘Beaufort’ and ‘Maxifort’ were used as rootstocks for grafted plants. Drought-stress treatments included: no drought-stress; 3 d of drought-stress before metribuzin application with no drought-stress after application (3 d DSB); and 3 d of drought-stress before metribuzin application with 3 d of drought-stress after application (3 d DSBA). Metribuzin was applied at 550 g ai ha−1. No difference in injury from metribuzin was observed in grafted and non-grafted plants. However, at 7 and 14 d after metribuzin treatment (DMT), less injury was observed on tomato in the 3 d DSBA treatment (5 and 2% injury, respectively) than on plants in the 3 d DSB treatment (15 and 8% injury, respectively) or those that were never drought-stressed (18 and 11% injury, respectively). Photosynthesis and stomatal conductance measured prior to metribuzin application were reduced similarly in grafted and non-grafted tomato subjected to drought-stress. Photosynthesis and stomatal conductance of grafted and non-grafted tomato at 7 DMT was not different among drought-stress treatments or metribuzin treatments. Grafted and non-grafted tomato plants under drought-stress exhibit similar tolerance to metribuzin. The risk of metribuzin injury to grafted tomato under drought-stress is similar to non-grafted tomato.


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Associate Editor for this paper: Steve Fennimore, University of California, Davis.



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