The effect of bio-fertilizers and a super-absorbent on the quantitative and qualitative characteristics of castor bean (Ricinus communis L.) under water-deficit conditions


  • Hadi T. AFSHARI Islamic Azad University, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Agronomy and Crop Breeding, Tabriz Branch, Tabriz (IR)
  • Bahram MIRSHEKARI Islamic Azad University, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Agronomy and Crop Breeding, Tabriz Branch, Tabriz (IR)
  • Abdollah HASANZADEH GHORTTAPEH Horticulture Crop Science Research Department, West Azerbaijan Agricultural and Natural Resources Research and Education Center (AREEO), Urmia (IR)
  • Farhad FARAHVASH Islamic Azad University, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Agronomy and Crop Breeding, Tabriz Branch, Tabriz (IR)
  • Mehrdad YARNIA Islamic Azad University, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Agronomy and Crop Breeding, Tabriz Branch, Tabriz (IR)



antioxidant, drought, grain yield, microorganism, proline


The effect of bio-fertilizers and super-absorbents on the modification of water-deficit stress was studied in castor. A field experiment was conducted with a split-plot design based on a completely randomized block design with three replications. The first factor included four levels (70, 100, 130, and 160 mm of evaporation pan A Class) in the main plot; the sub-factor was the application of four bio-fertilizer treatments (Azospirillum, Citrobacter, Azospirillum + Citrobacter, and control); and the superabsorbent at two levels (superabsorbent consumption and control) as a factorial was placed in the sub-plots. With the intensification of the water-deficit stress from 70 to 160 mm of evaporation, the number of seeds per plant, the 1,000-kernel weight, and the oil percentage significantly dropped. All three bio-fertilizer treatments significantly increased the number of grains, 1,000 kernel weight, and oil percentage compared to the control. Citrobacter in all four irrigation levels significantly increased the content of photosynthetic pigments, grin yield, oil yield and proline content and decreased the catalase activity and malondialdehyde content. The application of the super-absorbent under the stress condition of 160 mm significantly raised the content of chlorophyll b, soluble sugar, grain yield, oil yield, and proline compared to the control treatment. Among the combinations of bio-fertilizer and super-absorbent treatments, the highest photosynthetic pigments’ content, grain yield, and oil yield and the lowest catalase enzyme activity belonged to Azospirillum + superabsorbent consumption. However, the maximum soluble sugars and the minimum malondialdehyde content belonged to Citrobacter + superabsorbent.


Abobatta W (2018). Impact of hydrogel polymer in agricultural sector. Advances in Agriculture and Environmental Science 1:59-64.

Ahmadi A, Ceiocemardeh A (2005). Investigation on the physiological basis of grain yield and drought resistance in wheat: leaf photosynthetic rate, stomatal conductance, and non-stomatal limitations. International Journal of Agriculture & Biology 7(5):807-811.

AOAC (1984). Official methods of analysis: Association of Official Analytical Chemists. Inc, USA.

Arnon DI (1949). Copper enzymes in isolated chloroplasts. Polyphenoloxidase in Beta vulgaris. Plant Physiology 24(1):1-15.

Babaei K, Seyed Sharifi R, Pirzad AR, Khalilzadeh R (2107). Effects of bio fertilizer and nano Zn-Fe oxide on physiological traits, antioxidant enzymes activity and yield of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) under salinity stress. Journal of Plant Interaction 12(1):381-389.

Bates LS, Waldren RP, Teare ID (1973). Rapid determination of free proline for water-stress studies. Plant and Soil 39(1):205-207.

Bradford MM (1976). Rapid and sensitive method for the quantitation of microgram quantities of protein utilizing the principle of protein-dye binding. Annals of Biochemistry 72:248-254.

Cattivelli L, Rizza F, Badeck FW, Mazzucotelli E, Mastrangelo AM, Francia E, Mare C, Tondelliand A, Stanca M (2008). Drought tolerance improvement in crop plants: An integrated view from breeding to genomics. Field Crops Research 105:1-14.

De Vos, Schat CH R, De Waal MAM, Vooijs R, Ernst WHO (1991). Increased resistance to copper-induced damage of the root cell plasmalemma in copper-tolerant Silene cucubalus. Physiologia Plantarum 82:523-528.

DuBois M, Gilles KA, Hamilton JK, Rebers PA, Smith F (1956). Colorimetric method of determination of sugars and related substances. Analytical Chemistry 28(3):350-356.

Ebrahimi Chamani H, Fallah Amoli H, Niknejad Y, Barari Tari D (2022). Effects of zeolite and biofertilizers on yield components, yield and nutrients uptake in grains of two corn cultivars (cv. 6010 and ns71). Journal of Plant Nutrition 45(11):1670-1681.

El-Naggar AHM, Hassan MRA, Shaban EH, Mohamed MEA (2015). Effect of organic and bio fertilizers on growth, oil yield and chemical composition of the essential oil of Ocimum basillicum L. Plants. Alexandria. Journal of Agricultural Sciences 60:1-16.

FAO (2022). Retrieved from:

Farooq M, Wahid A, Kobayashi N, Fujita D, Basra SMA (2009). Plant drought stress: effects, mechanisms and management. Agronomy for Sustainable Development 29:185-212.

Fasusi OA, Cruz C, Babalola OO (2021). Agricultural sustainability: Microbial biofertilizers in rhizosphere management. Agriculture 11(2):163.

Ghafari H, Tadayon MR, Nadeem M, Cheema M, Razmjoo J (2019). Proline-mediated changes in antioxidant enzymatic activities and the physiology of sugar beet under drought stress. Acta Physiologiae Plantarum 41:23-38.

Hamurcu M, Khan MK, Pandey A, Ozdemir C, Avsaroglu ZZ, Elbasan F, Omay AH, Gezgin S (2020). Nitric oxide regulates watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) responses to drought stress. Biotech 10:1-14.

Hellal FA, Mahfouz SA, Hassan FAS (2011). Partial substitution of mineral nitrogen fertilizer by bio-fertilizer on (Anethum graveolens L.) plant. Agriculture and Biology Journal of North America 2:652-660.

Iqbal J, Zaib S, Farooq U, Khan A, Bibi I, Suleman S (2012). Antioxidant, antimicrobial and free radical scavenging potential of aerial parts of Periploca aphylla and Ricinus communis. International Scholarly Research Notices 2012:1-7.

Islam MR, Hu Y, Mao S, Jia P, Eneji AE, Xue X. (2011). Effects of water-saving superabsorbent polymer on antioxidant enzyme activities and lipid peroxidation in corn (Zea mays L.) under drought stress. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 91(5):813-819.

Kheirizadeh Arough Y, Seyed Sharifi R (2016). Bio fertilizers and zinc effects on some physiological parameters of Triticale under water-limitation condition. Journal of Plant Interactions 11:167-177.

Kruk J, Czytko HH, Oettmeier W, Trebest A (2005). Tocopherol as singlet oxygen scavenger in photosystem II. Journal Plant Physiology 162:749-757.

Kumar R, Kumawat N, Sahu YK (2017). Role of biofertilizers in agriculture. Popular Kheti 5(4):63-66.

Liv SS, Dick LA, Marco B, Magno JD, Cândido GC, William C, … Helge Z (2012). A review on the challenges for increased production of castor. Agronomy Journal 104(4):853-880.

Malakouti MJ, Tehrani MM (2005). Effects of micronutrient on the yield and quality of agricultural products: Micro-nutrient with macro-effects. Tarbiat Modares University Press, Tehran, Iran, pp 445

Marwat S, Rehman F, Khan EA, Baloch MS, Sadiq M, Ullah I, Javaria S, Shaheen S (2017). Review - Ricinus communis - Ethnomedicinal uses and pharmacological activities. Pakistan Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 30(5):1815-1827.

Mohammadi M, Ghane M, Majnoun Hoseini N, Moghaddam H (2019). Response of lentil (Lens culinaris L.) yield and physiological traits to chemical and bio -phosphorus fertilizers under different irrigation regimes. Journal of Agroecology 10(4):1107-1120.

Naeem M, Naeem MS, Ahmad R, Ahmad R, Ashraf MY, Ihsan MZ, Nawaz F, Athar HURR, Ashraf M, Abbas HT, Abdullah M (2018). Improving drought tolerance in maize by foliar application of boron: water status, antioxidative defense and photosynthetic capacity. Archives of Agronomy and Soil Science 64:626-639.

Nejatzadeh-Barandozi F, Gholami-Borujeni F (2014). Application of different fertilizers on morphological traits of dill (Anethum graveolens L.). Organic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters 4(4).

Ortiz N, Armada E, Duque E, Roldán A, Azcón R (2015). Contribution of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and/or bacteria to enhancing plant drought tolerance under natural soil conditions: effectiveness of autochthonous or allochthonous strains. Journal of Plant Physiology 174:87-96.

Osati F, Mir Mahmoudi T, Paseban Eslam B, Yazdan Seta S, Monirifar H (2022). Effect of irrigation levels and foliar application of fertilizers on some agronomic and oil characteristics of castor bean (Ricinus communis L.). Plant Science Today 9(1):1-8.

Rezaei Chianeh I, Jalilia J, Ebrahimian E, Mohammad Sidi S (2015). The effect of biofertilizers on quantitative and qualitative yield of Bacillus lentus at different levels of irrigation. Journal of Crops Improvement 17(3):775-788.

Sadeghi-Bakhtavari AR, Hazrati S (2018). Growth, yield, and fatty acids as affected by water-deficit and foliar application of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sulfur in castor bean. Journal of Crop Improvement 4: 453-468.

Saini HS, Westgate ME (2000). Reproductive development in grain crops during drought. Advances in Agronomy 68:59-95.

Singh-Gill S, Tuteja N (2010). Reactive oxygen species and antioxidant machinery in abiotic stress tolerance in crop plants. Plant Physiology and Biochemistry 48:909-930.

Smitha GR, Basak BB, Thondaiman V, Saha A (2019). Nutrient management through organics, bio-fertilizers and crop residues improves growth, yield and quality of sacred basil (Ocimum sanctum Linn). Industrial Crops and Products 128:599-606. indcrop.2018.11.058

Srivastava AK, Suprasanna P (2015). Redox-regulated mechanisms: implications for enhancing plant stress tolerance and crop yield. In: Elucidation of Abiotic Stress Signaling in Plants: Functional Genomics Perspectives 1191-205.

Stamenkovic C, Beskoski V, Karabegovic I, Lazic M, Nikolic N (2018). Microbial fertilizers: A comprehensive review of current findings and future perspectives. Spanish Journal of Agricultural Research 16(1):210-228.

Tesfamariam EH, Annandale JG, Steyn JM (2010). Water stress effects on winter canola growth and yield. Agronomy Journal 102:658-666.

Valipour H, Shafagh-Kolvanagh J, Ghassemi Golezani K, Alizadeh-Salteh S (2021). Improvement of yield-related traits of spring rapeseed in response to nano-superabsorbent and bio-fertilizers under water deficit conditions. Journal of Plant Physiology and Breeding 11(2):15-32.

Yaseen R, Hega RH, Kenawey MK, Eissa D (2020). Effect of super absorbent polymer and bio fertilization on maize productivity and soil fertility under drought stress conditions. Egyptian Journal of Soil Science 60(4):377-395.

Zhang X, Zhang F, Li Z, Yang Z, Hao L, Zhao H (2021). Comparative transcriptome analysis of Cynanchum thesioides under drought stress reveals candidate genes involved in succinic acid biosynthesis. Journal of Plant Biology.



How to Cite

AFSHARI, H. T., MIRSHEKARI, B., HASANZADEH GHORTTAPEH, A., FARAHVASH, F., & YARNIA, M. (2023). The effect of bio-fertilizers and a super-absorbent on the quantitative and qualitative characteristics of castor bean (Ricinus communis L.) under water-deficit conditions. Notulae Botanicae Horti Agrobotanici Cluj-Napoca, 51(2), 13048.



Research Articles
DOI: 10.15835/nbha51213048