The stress tolerance and water use efficiency of six pea varieties of different maturity and leaf type were examined in irrigated, water deficient and non-irrigated conditions. In drought years, the height and biomass production of crops were lower than in wet years, despite the applied irrigation. The early ripening variety was less sensitive to water deficit than the late ripening varieties. There was a significant difference in the stomatal resistance values, water use efficiency and yield components between mid-ripening varieties. During pod ripening, high seed yield can be obtained if the stomatal resistance is between 2.0–3.0 s cm-1 in the mid-ripening group. However, seed yield per crop significantly decreased beyond this level. The half leafless, lateripening ""afila"" variety was the least tolerant to drought production conditions. The obtained results provide an opportunity to select genotypes which are more tolerant to water deficit.
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