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Zinc in subterranean clover (Trifolium subterraneum L. cv. Seaton Park). II. Effects of phosphorus supply on the relationship between zinc concentrations in plant parts and yield

Reuter, D.J., Loneragan, J.F., Robson, A.D. and Plaskett, D. (1982) Zinc in subterranean clover (Trifolium subterraneum L. cv. Seaton Park). II. Effects of phosphorus supply on the relationship between zinc concentrations in plant parts and yield. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research, 33 (6). pp. 1001-1008.

Link to Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/AR9821001
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Abstract

The effect of phosphorus on the relationship of zinc concentrations in various plant parts to yield of Seaton Park subterranean clover was examined. Plants were grown in a glasshouse at three levels of phosphorus (39, 65 and 130 mg phosphorus/pot; denoted P1, P2 and P3 respectively) and six levels of zinc added in factorial combination to a sand deficient in both phosphorus and zinc. At the lowest three levels of zinc supply, plants were severely to moderately deficient in zinc: in them, increasing levels of phosphorus depressed growth and induced high concentrations of phosphorus (> 1% DM) in several plant parts and symptoms of phosphorus toxicity in leaves. At the highest three levels of zinc supply, plants at P1 were phosphorus deficient: application of P2 and P3 increased growth and induced zinc deficiency primarily by diluting the available zinc. In addition, P3 appeared to depress slightly the zinc content of plant tops by another mechanism. In severely zinc-deficient plants, phosphorus supply changed the relationships between zinc concentrations in various plant parts and yield of whole tops, probably as the result of phosphorus toxicity. In the youngest open leaf blades, an asymptotic relationship at P1 changed at P2 and P3 to sigmoidal and to ‘Piper-Steenbjerg’ relationships respectively. These changes would not have invalidated the use of plant analysis for diagnosing zinc deficiency. In moderately zinc-deficient plants, phosphorus supply had little or no effect on the relationships of zinc concentration in plant parts to yield of shoots. As a result, critical concentrations in plant parts generally remained constant over the whole range of phosphorus supply. The data refute suggestions that high levels of phosphorus in plant parts inactivate the zinc within them, thus removing a potential problem in the use of plant analysis for diagnosing zinc deficiency in subterranean clover. The results confirm the previous suggestion that a concentration range of 12-14 µg zinc/g in the youngest, open leaf blade is critical for diagnosis of zinc deficiency in subterranean clover.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Environmental and Life Sciences
Publisher: CSIRO
Copyright: © 1982, CSIRO.
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/31629
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