Yield and quality of melon under silicon doses and irrigation management in a greenhouse

ABSTRACT The netted melon requires special growing conditions, including a protected environment, an adequate staking system and proper water and nutrient management. This study aimed to assess the effect of irrigation levels and silicon doses on the yield and quality of Sunrise hybrid melons, in a greenhouse. A randomized block design was used, with a 5 x 3 factorial scheme and four replications. The first factor consisted of five silicon doses (0 kg ha-1, 50 kg ha-1, 100 kg ha-1, 150 kg ha-1 and 200 kg ha-1) and the second of three irrigation levels (40 %, 70 % and 100 % of the ETc). The results demonstrated that the applied irrigation levels and silicon doses have no influence on the yield traits of melon plants. The irrigation level corresponding to 100 % of the ETc promotes higher values for soluble solids (9.86 ºBrix) and maturation index (114.9) on fruits. The increase of silicon doses up to 200 kg ha-1 also increases the maturation index in the treatment with the greatest irrigation level and reduces this index at the shallowest level applied.