Effect of nitrogen on root and shoot relations and gas exchange in winter wheat
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The seedling growth of two drought-resistant wheat varieties was studied under solution culture in a plant growth chamber. The results showed that the shoot dry weight and leaf gas exchange parameters increased with the increase of nitrogen supply, but decreased when nitrogen supply reached a certain level. The optimum nitrogen concentrations for shoot dry weight and gas exchange were different among the varieties. The root growth was negatively correlated with the increase of nitrogen supply. The distribution of root length in different layers was similar for the two varieties. The root length was the longest at the layer of 5-15 cm, the shortest below 15 cm, and in between at the layer of 0-5 cm. The water use efficiency (WUE) decreased with increasing ratio of root to shoot (R/ S), while leaf photosynthetic rate tended to increase initially and then decrease. The increase in R/S was unfavorable to increase WUE, and the appropriate R/S for leaf photosynthetic rate was about 0.5.