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Idesia (Arica)

On-line version ISSN 0718-3429


LOPEZ-ELIAS, Jesús et al. Use of a hydrophilic polymer in Anaheim pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) under greenhouse conditions. Idesia [online]. 2013, vol.31, n.2, pp.77-81. ISSN 0718-3429.

In order to improve the efficiency of water use in vegetable production, during autumn-winter 2011-2012 the use of a polyacrylamide-based hydrophilic polymer (PAM) was evaluated in Anaheim pepper cv. Cardon in full production using drip irrigation undergre-enhouse conditions. The experimental design was a randomized complete block with five replicates. The experimental unit was 4 m long, 1.5 m wide (6 m2) with 20 total plants and five used for measurements. The parameters evaluated were: fruits per plant, fruit weight, commercial yield, size (length and diameter), volume of water applied, water use efficiency (WUE) and chlorophyll content. The incorporation of the hydrophilic polymer had no positive effect on production, fruit quality or WUE; however, there was an effect on the volume of applied water and chlorophyll content. With the polymer a yield of 1.5 kg m-2 with 24.9 fruits m-2, fruit weight 59.2 g, 16.2 cm length, 3.9 cm diametr, and WUE of 5.0 kg m-3 were obtained; whereas in the control without polymer the yield was 1.7 kg m-2, with 26.7 fruits m-2, fruit weight 62.1g, 16.3 cm length, 4.0 cm diameter and WUE of 4.9 kg m-3. With the incorporation of the polymer a 1.5% increase in soil moisture content was obtained, which represented a 12% reduction in the volume of water applied and a SPAD reading of 58.4 versus 57.7 of the control, thus the use of a hydrophilic polymer may be an important practice for producers who need to irrigate less frequently and reduce watering time.

Keywords : green pepper; hydrogel; water retention.

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