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Agronomy Journal Abstract -

Zinc Nutrition of Alfalfa1


This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 60 No. 5, p. 464-466
    Received: Jan 12, 1968

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  1. Shitao Yie Lo and
  2. H. M. Reisenauer2



The influence of Zn supply on the yield and chemical composition of alfalfa grown with symbiotically fixed N or with nitrate N under conditions that provided relatively rapid or slow growth rates is reported. Nitrogen source had no effect on the relationship between relative yield and the concentration of Zn in the leaf tissues confirming the earlier conclusion that symbiotic N fixation is only indirectly influenced by the Zn nutrition of the host plant. Rate of growth influenced the level of Zn in the nutrient media required for maximum yield but did not affect the leaf Zn concentration associated with maximmn production. Top yields were obtained with leaf Zn levels greater than 6 ppm. This value is approximately one-third to one-half that required for most other crops and explains the infrequent response of alfalfa to Zn fertilization.

Observations and analyses of field grown alfalfa revealed no unusual ability of the crop to absorb or accumulate soil Zn and failed to explain the reported beneficial influences of alfalfa on the Zn nutrition of associated crops.

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