Soil salinity is one of the most important stress factors to limit crop productivity worldwide. The effect of salt stress in the growth, photosynthesis, proline content and lipid peroxidation level in bean plants (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) were studied. The experiment was caried out with young bean plants (cv. Cher Starozagorski) under controlled conditions in a climatic room. In the present study, plants were grown in pots as hydroponic cultures in half-strength Hoagland nutrient solution. The plants were treated for 7 days with iso-osmotic concentrations of NaCl (100 mM) and Na2SO4 (67mM) after the first trifoliate leaf unfolded.
Saline conditions decreased the chlorophyll content and values were lower after the NaCl treatment. The proline content and lipid peroxidation level increased in the tissues of the salt-treated plants and the changes were similar for both types of salinity. Our result suggests that the applied dose of both salt types caused stress in the young bean plants. The study recorded decline in stomata conductance and photosynthetic capacity which could be attributed to the growth inhibition of the treated plants.