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Crop Science Abstract -

Colorimetric Measurements of Purple Flower Color in Alfalfa as Affected by Variety, Soil pH, Soil Fertility, Light, and Seed Source1


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 10 No. 4, p. 323-326
    Received: Aug 6, 1969

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  1. Kevin P. Sheridan and
  2. Guy W. McKee2



Measurements of the color of purple flowers from 10 varieties of alfalfa were made on two types of instruments. These were (1) reflection device using tristimulus filters for comparison of intact petals and (2) a grating type spectrophotometer for comparison of aqueous extracts. Alfalfa plants of the same variety grown under several field, greenhouse, and growth chamber conditions varied significantly in intensity of purple flower color. Flowers from field grown plants were lighter in color than plants produced in the greenhouse and growth chamber. Differences in flower color associated with soil pH, soil fertility, and seed lot were minor. When produced and measured under standardized conditions, purple flowers from different inflorescences on the same plant did not vary significantly nor did flowers produced on the same plant at different time periods. Either reflectance readings or colorimetric measurements were useful in characterizing varieties.

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