Influence of different water deficit levels during grain filling on yield and total polyphenols content in spring wheat cultivars

Carlos Fuentealba-Sandoval1, 2, Alberto Pedreros1*, Susana Fischer1, and María Dolores López1
Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) is often affected by abiotic stress such as high temperatures and water deficit. Due to this, grain yield can be reduced by a water deficit and an inadequate grain filling as well as affect synthesis of polyphenolic compounds. The aim of this study was to determine the influence of water deficit on yield in spring wheat cultivars during grain filling stage, and evaluate total polyphenol content in whole wheat flour. Experiments were conducted at two locations during 2016-2017 growing season, using a randomized complete block design with a split-plot arrangement, with 12 treatments consisting of three irrigations levels and four spring wheat cultivars. In Site 1, interaction (P < 0.05) was obtained between water deficit level and cultivar, 'Pantera-INIA CL' achieved highest grain yield (10.5 Mg ha-1), with a well-watered treatment, while 'Lasana' reached lowest grain yield (8.5 Mg ha-1), with a severe water deficit. However, water deficit did not affect significantly (P > 0.05) grain yield in Site 2, and differences were observed only between cultivars (P < 0.05) in a range of 6.1 to 7.1 Mg ha-1. Total polyphenol content was not affected by water deficit, differences were only observed between cultivars in both locations (P < 0.05). However, cultivars showed a higher total polyphenol content in Site 1. Water deficit level did not negatively influence yield of four wheat cultivars evaluated in Site 2. While in Site 1, only yield of 'Lasana' and 'Pantera-INIA CL' was reduced, with severe water deficit.
Keywords: Antioxidants, bread wheat, cereal production, irrigation, terminal drought, Triticum aestivum.
1Universidad de Concepción, Facultad de Agronomía, Av. Vicente Méndez 595, Chillán, Chile.
*Corresponding author (jpedrerosl@udec.cl).
2Universidad de Concepción, Programa de Magister en Ciencias Agronómicas, Av. Vicente Méndez 595, Chillán, Chile.