Effect of pH and phosphate on soluble soil aluminium and on growth and composition of kikuyu grass

Abstract

Kikuyu (Pennisetum clandestinium Hochst) grew relatively poorly on the Wollongbar krasnozem at soil pH values below 4.36. At these low pH values dry matter yields were increased by raising the pH or by application of high rates of phosphate. Both treatments decreased the concentration of soluble soil-Al on which the concentration of Al in tops was linearly dependent (r=0.95). The inverse relationship found between plant growth and Al concentration, when present in excess of ∼1.5 μg/g soil and ∼90 μg/g tops, is suggestive of Al toxicity. However, at Al concentrations causing severe yield reductions, the Ca concentration in kikuyu tops was approaching deficiency levels. The Al-Ca antagonism was further demonstrated by the reduction in Ca-uptake caused by increased concentrations of soluble soil-Al under constant conditions of exchangeable Ca and of pH. The yield-reducing effects of Al toxicity per se and Al-induced Ca deficiency are therefore confounded.

DOI: 10.1007/BF00010577

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Cite this paper

@article{Awad2004EffectOP, title={Effect of pH and phosphate on soluble soil aluminium and on growth and composition of kikuyu grass}, author={Azmi S. Awad and David William Edwards and Paul J. Milham}, journal={Plant and Soil}, year={2004}, volume={45}, pages={531-542} }