Two maize lines differing in drought resistance were grown at different drought stress induced by polyethylene glycol (PEG 10 000) solutions with osmotic potentials of –0.20, –0.40 and –0.80 MPa in the semipermeable membrane system. During the five days soil water content decreased (from 0.43 to 0.29, 0.25 and 0.23 g cm–3 for three PEG solutions, respectively) as well as leaf water potentials (w; from – 0.54 to –0.76, –1.06 and –1.46 MPa). These values were not significantly different between the investigated lines, indicating that a controlled and consistent soil moisture stress was achieved. Soil drying induced an increase in the ABA content of leaves and xylem of both lines and the effects on stomatal conductance were greater in drought susceptible line (B-432) compared to drought resistant line (ZPBL-1304). To test possible difference in stomatal sensitivity to xylem ABA between lines and to assess any ABA vs. w interaction, roots were fed with 10, 50 and 100 mmol m–3 ABA solutions in another set of experiments. These results showed that manipulation of xylem ABA affected stomata of both lines similarly. Comparison of stomatal sensitivity to drought-induced and applied ABA demonstrated that drought treatment affected stomata of investigated lines by differentially increasing their sensitivity to xylem ABA, thus confirming an interaction between chemical signalling and hydraulic signalling.