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ISHS Acta Horticulturae 609: International Symposium on Managing Greenhouse Crops in Saline Environment

FIRST RESULTS OF FLOATING SYSTEM CULTIVATION OF ERUCA SATIVA L.

Authors:   F. D'Anna, A. Miceli, F. Vetrano
Keywords:   soilless cultivation, hydroponics, leafy vegetables, rocket, salinity
DOI:   10.17660/ActaHortic.2003.609.54
Abstract:

     The floating system is an inexpensive and easy hydroponic system. It can be used to produce small-size leafy vegetables or ready-to-use vegetables that are raising more and more interest among consumers.
      The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of different salinity of nutrient solution and of water supply before the harvest, on rocket (Eruca sativa L.) plants hydroponically grown using the floating system technique.
      The growing cycle was carried out in greenhouse in march-april 2002. Two nutrient solutions with different electrical conductivity (2.8 and 3.8 mS cm-1) were compared. Both solutions had the same nutrient composition and the differences in EC were obtained using water with different salinity (ECw 0.8 and 1.6 mS cm-1). Five days before harvest, half of the floating boards were supplied only with water instead of nutrient solution, in order to evaluate the effect of this treatment on leaf nitrate content. Data were collected on plant height, leaf area, yeald and the ratio and content in the plant of anions and cations.
      The rocket shows a good adaptability to this growing system. EC levels tested have not affected the plant height and slightly influenced the yield. The water treatment before harvest, resulted in higher yeald and lower nitrate concentration.

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