Effect of Nettle (Urtica dioca L.) density on fiber yield and quality in a natural ecosystem under East Mediterranean conditions

  • Ioanna Kakabouki Laboratory of Agronomy, Department of Crop Science, Agricultural University of Athens, 75 Iera Odos Str., 11855 Athens, Greece
  • Charikleia Zisi Laboratory of Agronomy, Department of Crop Science, Agricultural University of Athens, 75 Iera Odos Str., 11855 Athens, Greece
  • Stella Karydogianni Laboratory of Agronomy, Department of Crop Science, Agricultural University of Athens, 75 Iera Odos Str., 11855 Athens, Greece
  • George Priniotakis Industrial Design and Production Engineering, University of West Attica, Egaleo Athens, Greece
  • Mohammed K Darawsheh Hellenic Agricultural Organization Demeter- National Cotton Classification Centre, 1st km Karditsa-Mitropili, 43100 Karditsa, Greece
  • Zoi Tselia Laboratory of Agronomy, Department of Crop Science, Agricultural University of Athens, 75 Iera Odos Str., 11855 Athens, Greece

Abstract

Nettle (Urtica dioica L.), a new industrial crop, has been cultivated since the 12th century for its fibers. This study was conducted to specify the optimal density of plants in order to move from wild harvest to nettle cultivation. For the present study, sampling was performed in 21 different fields throughout Greece, during October 2018. The effect of nine different plant densities on several agronomic (plants height, leaf area and dry matter) and fiber quality (straw length, fiber percentage, yield, extension at break, strength, length, diameter) characteristics was determined. The higher fiber yield occurred at the lower density (4 plants m2), while the higher fiber diameter observed at the highest density (12 plants m2). Comparisons were performed at the 5% level of significance (p ≤ 0.05). According to our results, there have been negative correlations between plant density and certain agronomic and quality characteristics such as plant height and fiber length, hence the optimal density is about seven plants per m2.

Keywords: nettle, density, wild harvest, fiber quality.

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How to Cite
Kakabouki, I., C. Zisi, S. Karydogianni, G. Priniotakis, M. Darawsheh, and Z. Tselia. “Effect of Nettle (Urtica Dioca L.) Density on Fiber Yield and Quality in a Natural Ecosystem under East Mediterranean Conditions”. Journal of Phytology, Vol. 12, Oct. 2020, pp. 73-76, doi:https://doi.org/10.25081/jp.2020.v12.6326.
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