Study of the root system. State-of-the-art at CIRAD-CA and analysis of recent trends

Raissac, M. de

Documents de Travail du CIRAD CA ( 2-93): 38 pp.


Accession: 002504625

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Research was conducted at CIRAD-CA under both field and controlled conditions, particularly with rice, to establish which farming practices were best suited to particular soil and climatic conditions and to identify the best performing genotypes under such conditions. The first objective was achieved by characterizing the root environment and the influence of soil preparation techniques on rooting and crop behaviour. The second objective was achieved by developing direct and indirect screening methods for rooting ability among genotypes. Controlled conditions (aeroponic techniques) allowed direct access to the root systems, enabling root structure and growth kinetics to be characterized and a fairly simple screening procedure to be developed. Complementary research focused on the physiological mechanisms involved in the adaptation of roots to difficult conditions in the tropics. This was achieved by varying single factors affecting the root environment (water, soil density, pH, partial pressure of oxygen and temperature). The second part of this report reviews recent publications on the water and mineral uptake and hormonal regulation of root systems in a range of crops.