The seeds of two durum wheat landraces, in the centre of Tunisia, were evaluated at germination and seedling growth for tolerance to salt condition induced by NaCl at the same water potentials of 0.0, -0.3, -0.6, -0.9 and -1.2 MPa with the electrical conductivity (EC) values of NaCl solutions 0.0, 6.5, 12.7, 18.4 and 23.5 dSm-1, respectively. In this study, we studied the percentage of germination and the growth of root and radicals of seeds stressed by salt. There was significant difference between Sboa Aljia and Jenah Khottifa in all parameters under salting stress. The germination percentage reaches the maximum at -0.3 MPa for both landraces varieties -97.33% for Sboa Aljia and 100% for Jenah Khottifa. The growth parameters are highly correlated to the level of salt stress. The highest water uptake noted for Sboa Aljia was 31.57% at 0 MPa. But we noted that the highest water uptake of seeds for Jenah Khottifa was 34.94% at -0.9 MPa. The length of radicle, the number of roots and the length of roots are highly correlated to the different levels of salt stress (coefficient of Pearson: 0.749, 0.418 and 0.695 respectively). Sboa Aljia is more resistant to salt stress than Jenah Khottifa. The growth of Sboa Aljia and Jenah Khottifa becomes slow and has low measures of parameters under the salt stress 14.2 g/L NaCl.
Key words: Landrace durum wheat, NaCl, root, coleoptile, water uptake.
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