Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation

 

The effects of atrazine on growth of flax (Linum usitatissimum L.) plants and on yield, chemical composition and germination of flax seeds Public Deposited

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  • Reports of previous research indicated a stimulatory effect of triazine herbicides on growth, yield and protein content of plants and seeds of various species. Studies were conducted in the greenhouse, laboratory and field to investigate the effects of atrazine (2-chloro-4-ethylamino-6-a sopropylarnino- s-triazine) on growth, yield, seed composition, and seed germination of flax (Linum usitatissimum L. ). Growth pattern and yield were studied in a field experiment in which flax was treated with different rates of atrazine and nitrogen. Atrazine appeared to modify growth pattern toward taller, greener and more branched plants. Seed yield was significantly increased. Treated plants were stunted at early stages of growth, but later outgrew the untreated plants. Atrazine-treated plants in greenhouse studies were also stunted. Treated plants were able to survive stress conditions longer than non-treated plants. This ability to survive stress in the greenhouse may explain the yield increase of the treated plants observed in the field. The method of Udy (1956) was used to measure protein content of seeds from the field plots. Seeds from atrazine-treated plants were higher in protein content than seeds from untreated plants. Nitrogen applications did not affect growth, yield or protein content. Based on the increase in seed protein, seed, behavior was studied in the greenhouse and laboratory. No agreement was found between greenhouse and laboratory tests on seed germination and seedling length. Seed weight, total available carbohydrates, oil, lipid classes and fatty acids were determined on seed with high protein content. Seed weight was significantly increased in all the treatments compared to the checks. Carbohydrate and oil percentages did not differ, but because of increased weight, the total amount of these components in atrazine treatments were significantly higher than the checks. Lipid classes determined by thin layer chromatography were not different in the two samples analyzed. Identification and relative percent of fatty acids were determined by gas liquid chromatography. Fatty acids classes were the same, but their relative amount appeared to be altered with an increase in linolenic being correlated with increasing atrazine concentration.
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