T. Shah, A.Z. Khan, M. Numan, W. Ahmad, M. Zahoor, M. Ullah and A. Jalal
Water stress experienced by a wheat crop during growth is recognized to have accumulative effect stated as a decline in total biomass over well water potential. The yield and nutrient uptake performance of two wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) varieties (Pirsabak-2013 and Atta Habib) to foliar feeding of 2% potassium (K) at three various growth phases (Zadoks GS-22, Zadoks GS-60 and Zadoks GS-73) was explored under water restricted environment in a wire house trial at the Agriculture Research Station, Harichand, Charsadda. The target was to find out the preeminent K application stage for enhancement in the drought tolerance potential. Drought stress was generated by suppression of irrigation at the three growth phases and then K was sprayed with the carboxymethyl cellulose as a sticking agent, however Tween-20 was used as a surfactant for foliar spray. Data about several agronomic characters (plant height, spike length, number of spikelets per spike, number of grains per spike, 1000-grain weight and grain yield per plant) of crop were documented via standard techniques. Moreover, at maturity, aboveground nitrogen, phosphorus, K, sodium and calcium uptakes by the crop were determined. The results point out that drought stress at all three acute growth phases unfavorably affected plant height, spike length, number of spikelets per spike, number of grains per spike, 1000-grain weight, grain yield and nutrient uptake of the wheat plant. The exogenous K application under drought stress at all three acute growth phases boosted tolerance of wheat by decreasing noxious nutrient’s uptake and augmenting the yield and yield characters. In this concerns, both varieties exposed undeviating behavior. Extreme enhancement in all the documented yield parameters and nutrients uptake was attained when K was practiced at grain filling stage of both varieties.