EFFECTS OF DROUGHT STRESS ON THE PHYSIOLOGY AND YIELD OF THE MAIZE: A REVIEW
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Maize is a cereal crop mainly cultivated in arid and semi-arid regions, where drought stress due to changing environment is affecting crop growth, development and yield. The aim of this literature review is to offer discourse on different physiological changes, germination and yield performance of maize under stressful environment of drought. The stressful environment due to water deficit causes a great alteration in a wide range of the physiological, biochemical and molecular process in maize which ultimately causes negative effect in yield. Drought stress influence in growth, development, yield and quality of the crop with impairment in the plant height, leaf area and biomass. A great variation in the photosynthetic process due to reduction in the photosynthetic pigments (chlorophyll a, chlorophyll b), stomatal conductance, photosystem activity, enzymes occur under water deficit condition in maize. Drought induce reduction in the soil moisture which results an unbalanced concentration of macro and micro nutrients leading to nutrient deficiency in plant. Maize is susceptible to drought during germination. Drought stress limits the germination process and early seedling growth. The severe and prolonged drought duration hampers more in reproductive stage during anthesis period than vegetative stage affecting final grain yield in maize crop.