Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) is one of the most cultivated forage legumes in Morocco thanks to its great adaptation to the climatic conditions of this country, its high protein content and its ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen in symbiosis with rhizobia. Environmental stresses such as drought and salinity constitute a major factor limiting the symbiotic nitrogen fixation and legume productivity. In the last decades, this process has interested scholars in understanding the implication of these strains in legume stress tolerance in order to make these symbioses more efficient under difficult conditions. Seed osmopriming is a great technique in the amelioration of seed germination and seedlings growth in responses to several abiotic stress conditions. In this chapter, the effects of water deficit on the Moroccan alfalfa populations and their symbiotic association with rhizobia were discussed. Besides, osmopriming could make these symbioses more efficient especially under stress conditions.
Part of the book: New Perspectives in Forage Crops