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Journal of Plant Growth Regulation

, Volume 38, Issue 4, pp 1467–1480 | Cite as

Effects of Plant Growth Regulators on Seed Filling, Endogenous Hormone Contents and Maize Production in Semiarid Regions

  • Irshad AhmadEmail author
  • Muhammad Kamran
  • Xiangping Meng
  • Shahzad Ali
  • Bayasgalan Bilegjargal
  • Tie Cai
  • Tiening Liu
  • Qingfang HanEmail author
Article
  • 186 Downloads

Abstract

In this study, we determined whether the application of uniconazole alone or combined with ethephon could enhance the seed-filling rates in maize by regulating the endogenous hormone contents. Uniconazole was applied to the foliage at concentrations of 0 (CK), 25 (U25), 50 (U50) and 75 (U75) mg L−1 at the 12-leaf stage. In addition, uniconazole was applied to the foliage at the 12-leaf stage and ethephon at 10 days after silking stage at concentrations of 0 (CK), 25 mg L−1 uniconazole + 100 mg L−1 ethephon (U25 + E100), 50 mg L−1 uniconazole + 200 mg L−1 ethephon (U50 + E200) and 75 mg L−1 uniconazole + 300 mg L−1 ethephon (U75 + E300). Uniconazole applied alone or in combination with ethephon significantly improved ear characters and grain yield. Uniconazole applied alone or combination with ethephon significantly improved the dry matter accumulation in seeds and seed-filling rates. Uniconazole significantly increased the abscisic acid (ABA) and zeatin (Z) + zeatin riboside (ZR) contents of seeds, but reduced the gibberellic acid (GA) contents. The application of uniconazole combined with ethephon decreased the ABA, Z + ZR and GA contents in seeds. The ABA and Z + ZR contents were significantly positively correlated, whereas the GA content was negatively correlated with the maximum seed weight, maximum seed-filling rate and mean seed-filling rate. The application of uniconazole alone significantly improved the seed-filling rates in maize by regulating the endogenous hormone contents. Thus, we conclude that uniconazole application at 50 mg L−1 in the 12-leaf stage can enhance the maize production.

Keywords

Ethephon Hormones content Maize Semiarid regions Seed-filling Uniconazole 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors extend their sincere thanks to the editors of this journal and the anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments and suggestions that have significantly improved the manuscript. We are also grateful to Ding Ruixia, Nie Junfeng and Yang Baoping for help during experimental period.

Author Contributions

QH, LT and TC conceived and designed the research. IA performed research. MK, XM and SA contributed in the field experiments. IA wrote the manuscript. BB helped in English revision.

Funding

This study was supported by funding from High Technology Research and Development Program of China (863 Program, No. 2013AA102902), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 31601256), the special fund for Agro-scientific Research in the Public Interest (201303104), the 111 Project of Chinese Education Ministry (B12007).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflict of interest.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Irshad Ahmad
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Muhammad Kamran
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiangping Meng
    • 1
    • 2
  • Shahzad Ali
    • 1
    • 2
  • Bayasgalan Bilegjargal
    • 3
  • Tie Cai
    • 1
    • 2
  • Tiening Liu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Qingfang Han
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.College of Agronomy, Key Laboratory of Crop Physio-ecology and Tillage Science in North-western Loess Plateau, Ministry of AgricultureNorthwest A&F UniversityYanglingChina
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of Agricultural Soil and Water Engineering in Arid and Semiarid Areas, Ministry of Education, Institute of Water Saving Agriculture in Arid Areas of ChinaNorthwest A&F UniversityYanglingChina
  3. 3.College of Economics and ManagementNorthwest A&F UniversityYanglingChina

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