The five cultivars of kiwifruit viz., Allison, Hayward, Abbott, Monty and Bruno during the years 2011 and 2012 in the Department of Fruit Science, Dr. Y. S. Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry, Solan, Himachal Pradesh, India. Two irrigation treatments i.e. standard irrigation (at 80% field capacity) and deficit irrigation (at 60 % F C) were applied to these cultivars from March to October with three replications in Randomized Block Design (RBD). The leaf nutrient content (%) and frequency of irrigation (irrigation interval in days) were investigated in kiwifruit in response to these irrigation treatments. The leaf nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), Potassium (K), Calcium (Ca) and Magnesium (Mg) contents varied with cultivars under two irrigation regimes. The leaf N content and Ca content (%) was observed highest in cultivar Monty; P content in Allison; K content in Hayward; Mg content (%) in Abbott and Monty under standard irrigation treatment. These nutrient contents reduced significantly at 0.05 % level of significance with deficit irrigation treatment in different cultivars. The % reduction in these nutrients with deficit irrigation treatment was found to be highest in cultivar Hayward and the least in Bruno. The total number of irrigation applied under standard and deficit irrigation were 16 and 10 respectively, during both the years. The response of Bruno cultivar in terms of leaf nutrient content under water deficit condition is much better in comparison to all other cultivars. Bruno is considered to be drought tolerant cultivar and Hayward to be drought sensitive. Thus, the Bruno cultivar should be preferred for cultivation in water scarce regions.
Deficit irrigation, Irrigation frequency, Kiwifruit, Nutrient status
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