Hydraulic conductance in seedlings of Coffea arabica L. accessions under contrasting nursery environments at Jimma, southwestern Ethiopia

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Taye Kufa
ürgen Burkhardt


The study was carried out with the objective to investigate the variations among Coffea
arabica L. accessions in water conductance under contrasting nursery environments at the
Jimma Agricultural Research Center, southwestern Ethiopia. The treatments included two
shade (moderate shading and full sunlight) and two irrigation (well watered and water
stressed) regimes, which were superimposed on seedlings of 12 accessions. The results
depicted variations in water flow in the root and shoot of coffee seedlings due to shading,
irrigation and accessions with varying levels of significance. The Harenna accessions had
higher root and shoot hydraulic conductance as compared to others both for whole-plant
as well as stem- and leaf- specific conductivity. Significant variations were observed in
root, whole- shoot, leaf, petiole and primary branch due to shading regimes. Moderate
shading significantly enhanced main stem conductivity on the first and 12 days after
irrigation (DAI). Likewise, leaf- and stem- specific conductivities were significantly
different among coffee accessions on eighth DAI. The interaction between shading and
irrigation was highly significant on stem hydraulic conductivity at the beginning and
eighth DAI of withholding watering. In all cases, significantly higher conductivities were
measured in water-stressed seedlings. Overall, eight and 16 DAI were noted to be the
respective threshold levels under full sunlight and moderate shade conditions, indicating
twofold-advantages of shading to postponed the adverse effects of rapid soil drying. Our
findings revealed peculiar water flow attributes of arabica coffee accessions and can be of
interest in future breeding to characterize and utilize coffee genetic resources in Ethiopia.

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How to Cite
Kufa, T., & Burkhardt, ürgen. (2011). Hydraulic conductance in seedlings of Coffea arabica L. accessions under contrasting nursery environments at Jimma, southwestern Ethiopia. Ethiopian Journal of Applied Science and Technology, 2(1), 15-29. Retrieved from http://ejhs.ju.edu.et/index.php/ejast/article/view/824
Author Biographies

Taye Kufa, Jimma, Ethiopia

Agricultural Research Center, Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research, P. O.
Box 192, Jimma, Ethiopia

ürgen Burkhardt, Bonn, Germany

Institute of Crop Science and resource Conservation-Plant Nutrition, University of Bonn,
Karlrobert-Kreiten-Str.13, D-53115 Bonn, Germany
*Corresponding author: Fax: +251-471111999; E-mail: kufataye@yahoo.com