Effect of potassium on the cherry tomato growth and nutrition in hydroponic system
Potassium has a great impact on plant growth. It regulates synthesis reactions and participates in the translocation of photoassimilates, cell elongation, and enzymatic reactions related to photosynthesis, respiration, synthesis of starches, proteins, and lignin. The objective of this study was to characterize the growth of cherry tomato in hydroponic system under increasing potassium doses. The experiment was arranged in a completely randomized design, with four replications. The treatments consisted of different doses of potassium (6, 8, 10 and 12 mmol L-1) evaluated at 26, 41, 56, 71, 86 and 101 DAT (days after transplanting). Accumulation of dry mass of leaves, stems, roots, flowers, and fruits; leaf area; number of flowers and fruits; length and volume of roots were determined at each evaluation time. The physiological indices studied were: relative growth rate, leaf area index and ratio, net assimilation rate, root-shoot ratio, and nutrient accumulation in leaves, stems, and roots. Potassiumdoses between 6 and 12 mmol L-1 had no influence on the growth of the cherry tomato. The relative growth rate has gradually decreased over the evaluation period. Accumulation of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur in the leaves peaked at 101 DAT.