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Journal of soil science and plant nutrition

versión On-line ISSN 0718-9516


SANCHEZ-RODRIGUEZ, A.R; DEL CAMPILLO, M. C; TORRENT, J  y  JONES, D.L. Organic acids alleviate iron chlorosis in chickpea grown on two p-fertilized soils. J. Soil Sci. Plant Nutr. [online]. 2014, vol.14, n.2, pp.292-303.  Epub 12-Mayo-2014. ISSN 0718-9516.

The objectives of this paper are to investigate the response of chickpea growing on two iron (Fe) chlorosis-inducing calcareous soils, with different Fe availability, generously supplied with phosphate (P), and to evaluate the effectiveness of a mixture of organic acids (citric, oxalic and malic) to alleviate Fe chlorosis symptoms. Application of P (+P treatment) aggravated Fe deficiency irrespective of the soil. Phosphorus-induced Fe chlorosis was alleviated when organic acids were also applied to the soil (+P+OA treatment), which was reflected in increased leaf chlorophyll concentration and decreased root ferric reductase activity in the plants growing on both soils; the effect was stronger for plants grown on the soil with the lowest Fe-available content. However, Fe chlorosis was still more severe than in the control (-P treatment) plants. The need of -P treatment plants to explore soil in order to take up nutrients is reflected in their root architecture, reduced root diameter and increased length, surface and volume relative to +P and +P+OA roots. Organic acids alleviate Fe chlorosis in function of non crystalline Fe oxides content but inhibit the root response mechanisms as a consequence of increasing Fe concentration in the soil solution.

Palabras clave : Calcareous soils; iron oxides; citrate; malate; oxalate; phosphate fertilization.

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