Use of water restriction in the inoculation of carrot seeds

Abstract: This study aimed at evaluating the method of inoculation of carrot seeds in a potato-dextrose-agar medium (PDA) added of mannitol. Alternaria radicina was the fungus chosen to test such methodology. The osmosis-controlling agent was employed to obtain the osmotic potentials of 0.6 MPa, 0.8 MPa, 1.0 MPa and 1.2 MPa. In comparison with the control treatment, no significant mycelial growth inhibition was noticed at any of the osmotic potentials considered. The seeds were distributed over the fungal colonies for infection, where they remained for 48, 72, 96, 120 and 144 hours, at the osmotic potentials of 0.0 MPa (control), 0.6 MPa, 0.8 MPa, 1.0 MPa and 1.2 MPa, respectively. Tests of germination, sanitization and emergence were performed to evaluate the effects of colonization. Regarding the germination, the different osmotic potentials resulted in similar percentages of abnormal seedlings and dead seeds. As for the sanitization testing, higher infection rates were observed at the osmotic potentials of 1.0 MPa and 1.2 MPa. The lowest percentage of emergence was found at -1.2 MPa, therefore suggesting that this osmotic potential (produced with mannitol) might be used for infecting carrot seeds for research purposes.