Print version ISSN 0102-0536
PAULUS, Dalva; DOURADO NETO, Durval and PAULUS, Eloi. Sensory analysis, nitrate and nutrient concentration of lettuce grown in hydroponics under saline water. Hortic. Bras. [online]. 2012, vol.30, n.1, pp. 18-25. ISSN 0102-0536. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-05362012000100004.
This study aimed to evaluate the content of nutrients and nitrate and perform sensory analysis of lettuce in hydroponic system under saline water. The experiment was carried out in a greenhouse from December, 2007 to January, 2008, in Piracicaba. The experimental design was randomized blocks and factorial scheme (five salinity levels obtained with the addition of NaCl that resulted in different electrical conductivities of the water (dS m-1): 0.42, 1.53, 3.52, 5.55, 7.43 and two cultivas of lettuce (Veronica and Pira Roxa). The evaluations were: sensory analysis applying hedonic scale and through this, which sample presented the best and the least taste, the purchase intent and consumption, nitrate, absorption of nutrients by leaves and determination of nutrients in the nutrient solution. For the attribute of cultivars, Veronica received the highest marks in salt level 1.53 and 5.55 dS m-1. For cultivar Pira Roxa was awarded the best grade for lettuce grown in non-saline water. For other attributes there was no significant difference in levels of salinity. To purchase intention, it was found that cv. Verônica and Pira Roxa had good market acceptance. The lowest levels of nitrate (1960 mg kg-1 and 2620 mg kg-1 fresh weight) of Verônica and Pira Roxa, respectively, were related to the electrical conductivity of 0.42 dS m-1, increasing water salinity to 7.43 dS m-1, the leaf content of nitrate increased to 2500 mg kg-1 and 3420 mg kg-1 for the cultivars Verônica and Pira Roxa. As the time of exposure to salt in a hydroponic system was short, around 25 days, there were no symptoms of nutrient deficiency and whole lettuce was classified as suitable for human consumption.
Keywords : Lactuca sativa; salinity; nutrition; preference.