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Physiological Effects of Maize Crop under Altered Plant Populations and Soil Moisture Regimes

Theivasigamani Parthasarathi, Koothan Vanitha, Gopal Velu



The maize is major cultivated plant in the farming community in water scarce areas. Study was conducted at Coimbatore, India during the year 2010 with three soil moisture levels, 100% irrigation water (0.8 IW/CPE ratio), 75% irrigation water (0.6 IW/CPE ratio), 50% irrigation water (0.4 IW/CPE ratio) and three plant density levels, normal spacing (60x20 cm), narrow spacing (45X20 cm) and reduced narrow spacing (30x30 cm) levels. The reduction in yield of maize by reducing the soil moisture was compensated by increasing the plant density which led to alter or change in the radiation use efficiency, light interception, light extinction co efficient. The increase in plant density, which will increase the light interception and radiation use efficiency, causes improvement in dry matter accumulation and yield of maize. The normal irrigation (0.8 IW/CPE ratios) level with narrow spacing (45x20 cm) is the best treatment with increase in yield of 800 kg ha-1 compared to the control treatment.

Keywords: Plant population, Light extinction co efficient, Radiation use efficiency, Water stress, Photoassimilates, Biomass

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