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This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 62 No. 3, p. 351-352
    Received: Sept 29, 1969

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Absorption of Na, Cl, and B by Desert Saltbush in Relation to Composition of Nutrient Solution Culture1

  1. N. Jerry Chatterton,
  2. C. M. McKell,
  3. F. T. Bingham and
  4. W. J. Clawson2



Absorption of Na, Cl, and B ions by desert saltbush (Atriplex polycarpa (Torr.) S. Wats.) was investigated in relation to the concentration of these elements in water cultures. Plants were grown for 6 weeks in four different solution cultures containing sufficient NaCl to give osmotic potentials of —0.8, —10.0, —20.0, and —30.0 atm. Extremely large quantities of both Na and C1 (10 and 13%, respectively) were found in plants growing in the highest level of salinity. Although much salt is absorbed by desert saltbush, its adaptation to salinity may not be by virtue of a capacity to function with large quantities of salt within the photosynthetically active tissues. Instead, most of the absorbed salt may be localized in the trichomes and therefore essentially isolated from the mesophyll tissues. In contrast to Na and Cl, B was found to be absorbed relatively slowly. Tolerance of desert saltbush to substrates high in B may therefore be due to a selectivity mechanism at the site of absorption.

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