Salinity is a dominant obstacle to the proper germination of seeds, growth of seedlings, and, consequently, the production of crops. The priming of seeds with different treating agents can efficiently impart salinity tolerance. Kidney bean is a nutritious and popular vegetable crop in
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Salinity is a dominant obstacle to the proper germination of seeds, growth of seedlings, and, consequently, the production of crops. The priming of seeds with different treating agents can efficiently impart salinity tolerance. Kidney bean is a nutritious and popular vegetable crop in the world. Literature shows that salt stress negatively disturbs the germination and growth of kidney beans. In the present research, we investigated the potentiality of salicylic acid (SA) and hydrogen peroxide (H2
) as priming and exogenous agents to alleviate the salinity-inhibited germination and growth of kidney beans. The seeds were pretreated with SA (1 mM and 2 mM) and H2
(0.1 mM and 0.15 mM) and soaked in normal tap water (hydro-priming) for 60 min. In addition, for the control experiment, untreated seeds were used. Finally, primed seeds were subjected to salt stress (150 mM NaCl). Our results exhibited that salt stress considerably lowered the percentage of germination (GP), germination index (GI), seed vigor index (SVI), shoot length (SL), root length (RL), shoot–root fresh and dry biomass, and plant growth. The results also exhibited that salt stress significantly decreased the relative water content (RWC) and photosynthetic pigments such as chlorophyll, carotenoids, lycopene, and beta-carotene contents. The SA- and H2
- and hydro-priming stimulated the GP, GI, SL, RL, SVI, and seedling growth. Data also revealed that the supplementation of SA and H2
enhanced RWC and photosynthetic pigments. When compared to other treatments, pretreatment with 1 mM SA was determined to be comparatively more effective at imparting the salt tolerance of kidney beans. Overall, these results, via a heatmap and principal component analysis, uncovered that priming and exogenous applications of SA and H2
can improve salt tolerance and enhance germination and seedling characteristics of kidney beans.