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Open AccessArticle

Effects of Water Stress and Modern Biostimulants on Growth and Quality Characteristics of Mint

1
Plant Production Department, College of Food and Agriculture Sciences, King Saud University, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia
2
Floriculture, Ornamental Horticulture, and Garden Design Department, Faculty of Agriculture (El-Shatby), Alexandria University, Alexandria 21545, Egypt
3
Department of Food Industries, Damietta University, Damietta 3417, Egypt
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Precision Agriculture Laboratory, Department of Pomology, Faculty of Agriculture (El-Shatby), Alexandria University, Alexandria 21545, Egypt
5
Department of Agricultural Engineering, College of Food and Agriculture Sciences, King Saud University, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia
6
Agricultural Engineering Research Institute (AEnRI), Agricultural Research Centre, Giza 12618, Egypt
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Agronomy 2020, 10(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy10010006
Received: 5 November 2019 / Revised: 6 December 2019 / Accepted: 15 December 2019 / Published: 18 December 2019
Natural biostimulants combine different elicitors that may influence economic properties of herbal crops, such as mint. Mint (Mentha longifolia L.) plants were subjected to three water levels based on container substrate capacity (CSC; 100% CSC, 70% CSC, and 50% CSC) and/or applications of four biostimulants (CRADLE™, Mobilizer™, Nanozim De’Lite™ [ND], and Nanozim NXT™ [NN]). ND and NN exhibited higher vegetative growth and root dry weight than the control (without biostimulants) and other treatments. NN produced the highest fresh and dry mint yields under all water levels. Irrigation water-use efficiency (IWUE) of NN was highest (2.78 kg m−3) with 70% CSC, whereas the control produced the lowest IWUE (1.85 kg m−3) with 100% CSC. Biostimulants boosted physiological and metabolic responses, including gas exchange, leaf water potential, relative water content, and proline accumulation of stressed plants. NN treatment with 70% CSC had the highest essential oil (EO) ratio (3.35%). Under 70% and 50% CSC with NN treatment, the proportion of 1,8-cineol increased and that of pulegone decreased in EOs. Increased antioxidant activities, reduced H2O2 levels, and increased catalase and superoxide dismutase activities were observed. Applications of ND and NN during water stress conditions increased economic and medicinal properties of mint EOs with applications in the agricultural and pharmaceutical industries. View Full-Text
Keywords: Mentha longifolia; biostimulants; Ascophyllum nodosum; humic acid; antioxidants Mentha longifolia; biostimulants; Ascophyllum nodosum; humic acid; antioxidants
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MDPI and ACS Style

O. Elansary, H.; Mahmoud, E.A.; El-Ansary, D.O.; Mattar, M.A. Effects of Water Stress and Modern Biostimulants on Growth and Quality Characteristics of Mint. Agronomy 2020, 10, 6.

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