Contribution of phosphorus (32P) absorption and remobilization for citrus growth
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Background and aims
Phosphorus (P) is a mobile nutrient in the plant so growth depends on its internal remobilization and a plant’s ability to respond to its availability in the growing media. This study was conducted to evaluate the influence of P status and rootstocks on the patterns of P uptake and remobilization in orange trees.
Sweet orange trees on Cleopatra mandarin (CM) or Rangpur lime (RL) rootstocks were grown for nine months in nutrient solution (NS) that was either P-deficient (DNS) or was P-sufficient (SNS). After this period, half of the trees were reciprocally transferred between DNS and SNS (from D to S and S to D), while the others remained in their initial P availability.
Trees on RL had more shoot and root growth, accumulated more P and had greater efficiency of P absorption and transport to the shoot (PAE) than those on CM. The major source of P for growth was previously stored P even with an adequate current P supply to the roots. This suggested the dominance of P remobilization over P uptake and the requirement that trees had sufficient stored P to meet P demand of new growth. Trees on CM had greater concentrations of remobilized P in new shoots than trees on RL.
Trees grafted on rootstocks less able to take up P (CM) were more dependent on the internal reserves of P for new growth than rootstocks with higher PAE (RL).
KeywordsNutritional stress Nutrient solution Rootstock varieties Root growth Uptake efficiency
We thank the São Paulo State Research Foundation (FAPESP) for financial support (process 2007/04634-3).
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