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Root growth is critical to the establishment of planted seedlings. Without sufficient root growth, seedlings can undergo stress just after planting. Stress occurs when a newly planted seedlings root system cannot supply enough water to transpiring leaf and needle to maintain a proper water and osmotic balance and ensure survival. Apart from this root growth is also necessary in proper anchorage of plants. Plant growth and development starts from the germination of seeds followed by root elongation and shoot emergence. Plants synthesize various hormones or growth regulators which are important biotic factors to regulate growth. Among the five natural plant growth regulators (Auxins, gibberellins, cytokinins, abscissic acid, ethylene) auxins are considered the most important. They are produced in the root tips as well as the shoot tips. Auxins promote root initiation (Chambers, 1999) and they also induce growth of adventitious roots i.e. branching of roots. In horticulture auxins especially naphthalene acetic acid (NAA) and indole -3-butyric acid (IBA) are commonly used to stimulate root initiation of plants. However, high concentrations of auxins can inhibit root elongation and only focus on adventitious root formation which paves the way for studying alternative methods to promote better root growth in plants. The nanoparticles are those particles whose one of the dimensions are smaller than 100 nm in length. Nanoparticles have several benefits over the conventions regular size particles as they have highest surface to volume ratio. They interact with plants causing many morphological and physiological changes depending on the properties of nanoparticles. Nanotechnology opens a large scope of applications in the fields of agriculture and biotechnology because of their unique physiochemical properties i.e. high surface area, better reactivity, particle morphology and tunable size of the pore. They also serve as magic bullets which have anti-microbial properties. Several researchers from their study have found out that the following nano-particles play a beneficial role in root growth in plants; Silicon Dioxide Nanoparticles – The lower concentrations of SiO2 have shown improved seed germination of tomato seeds Siddiqui and Al-Wahibi (2014). They do so by providing better nutrients availability and pH and conductivity to the growing medium Suriyaprabha et al. (2012). Exogenous application of nano-SiO2 on Olga bay larch seedlings {Larix olgensis henry} showed improved seedling growth and quality including mean height, root collar diameter, main root length and the number of lateral roots of seedlings and they also induced chlorophyll synthesis (Bao-shan et al. 2004). Under salinity stress nano-SiO2 improves leaf fresh and dry weight and proline accumulation hence improving the tolerance of plants to abiotic stress (Kalteh et al. 2014). Haghighi et al. 2012; Li et al. 2012; Siddiqui et al.2014. Wang et al. (2014) conducted an experiment done on rice plant treated with quantum dots (QDs), without Quantum dots, and with silica coated with QDs and found that silica coated with QDs enhanced rice root growth significantly. `2 Zinc Oxide Nano-particles (ZnO-NPs) - Lower concentrations of ZnO-NPs showed beneficial effect on seed germination of plants like peanut (Prasad et al. 2012), cucumber, soyabean (Sedghi et al. 2013) and wheat (Ramesh et al. 2014). The effect of nanoparticles on germination depends on the concentrations of nanoparticles used and varies from plant to plant as studies showed that application of ZnO-NPs on cucumber, alfalfa, and tomato (de la Rosa et al.) enhanced germination only in the cucumber seeds. ZnO-NPs induced improvement in plant biomass, shoot and root growth, root area, chlorophyll and protein synthesis in Guar. Scanning microscopy and induced coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy shows that seedling roots of green-gram and chickpea absorbed ZnO-NPs and promoted root and shoot length along with their biomasses (Mahajan et al. 2011). Therefore, RutPro was prepared by mixing silica nanoparticles and zinc oxide nanoparticles with some agriculturally important slow release carriers and binders. Materials and methodology: Cucumber, tomato and brinjal seed varieties were obtained from IARI, New Delhi. RutPro formulation consists of a mixture of silica, zinc oxide nanoparticles and carriers. 5 grams’ seeds were dry dressed with 0.25 grams of RutPro formulations in screw capped glass bottles at room temperatures. The glass bottles containing seeds and formulations were manually shaken for 3-5 minutes for 5 times in a span of an hour. Seeds without formulation served as ‘control’ which were used to compare the growth rates with the dressed ones (Fig. 1). For monitoring seed growth, two methods were adapted as follows: Seed germination evaluation in blot paper: Rounded filter paper strips were placed in petri dishes and were carefully watered until moisture spread out evenly. 10 seeds in each petri dish were carefully put. The experiment was conducted in triplicates Seed germination in pro-tray followed by transplanting in field conditions: Seeds were sown in foam trays at specific spacing and depth and were watered. The plants were transplanted in the fields after attaining a suitable height and width. They were then used to monitor the growth of roots as well as overall plant growth.


110nm rods



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