Chickpea genotypes differ in their sensitivity to Zn deficiency

H.R. Khan, G.K. Mcdonald, Zed Rengel

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    Zinc (Zn) deficiency is common in most of the chickpea growing areas of the world and growing Zn-efficient genotypes on Zn-deficient soil is a benign approach of universal interest. Response of 13 chickpea genotypes (10 desi and 3 kabuli) to Zn nutrition was studied in a pot experiment under glasshouse conditions. Plants were grown in a Zn-deficient siliceous sand for 6 weeks and fertilized with 0 (Zn-) and 2.5 mg Zn per kg soil (Zn+). When grown with no added Zn, Zn deficiency symptoms (chlorosis of younger leaves and stipules followed by necrosis of leaf margins) appeared 3-4 weeks after planting and were more apparent in cultivars Tyson, Amethyst and Dooen than Kaniva and T-1587. Zn deficiency reduced shoot growth, but it was less affected in breeding lines T-1587 and CTS 11308 than cultivars Tyson, Dooen, Amethyst and Barwon. Among all genotypes, Tyson produced the lowest root dry weight in Zn-treatment. Zinc efficiency based on shoot dry weight showed marked differences among genotypes; breeding lines CTS-60543, CTS-11308 and T-1587 were 2-fold more Zn-efficient than cultivars Tyson and Dooen. A higher Zn accumulation per plant and higher Zn uptake per g. of root dry weight were recorded in T-1587 and CTS-11308 when compared with Tyson. Root:shoot ratio was increased and proportionally more Zn was transported to the shoot when the soil was deficient. Cultivars that were very sensitive to Zn deficiency tended to have their root:shoot ratio increased by Zn deficiency more than less sensitive cultivars. The insensitive lines T-1587 and CTS-11308 transported more than 70% of the total absorbed Zn to the shoot. It is concluded that chickpea genotypes vary in their sensitivity to Zn deficiency. Advanced breeding lines T-1587 and CTS-11308 are relatively more Zn-efficient compared with Australian chickpea cultivar Tyson. Zn efficiency in chickpea genotypes is probably related to an efficient Zn absorption coupled with a better root to shoot transport.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)11-18
    JournalPlant and Soil: An International Journal on Plant-Soil Relationships
    Issue numberNo. 1, January (I)
    Publication statusPublished - 1998

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