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Crop Science Abstract -

Evaluation of a Rapid Technique for Measuring Soluble Solids in Corn Stalks1


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 10 No. 6, p. 625-626
    Received: Dec 31, 1969

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  1. D. K. Campbell and
  2. D. J. Hume2



Soluble solids in corn (Zea mays L.) stalks were measured by multiplying the refractometer reading in percent Brix of a small sample of expressed juice by the moisture lost in drying a stalk sample. This method was evaluated by comparison with total sugar determination by the Shaffer-Somogyi method on the same samples. For individual internodes sampled over the growing season the correlation was r = +0.93**. The ratio of total sugars : soluble solids over a range of genotypes and populations varied from 0.48 to 0.66

More rapid estimates of soluble solids in the stalk were obtained by sampling one internode near the ear with the refractometer and multiplying the Brix reading by the moisture lost in drying the entire stalk. Results obtained by using refractometer readings from the ear internode, the internode above the ear, and the internode below the car were highly correlated (r = +0.92**, +O.SO*+, and 0.90**, respectively) with the total sugar content of the stalks.

The refractometric technique was an inexpensive, rapid means of determining levels of soluble metabolites in corn stalks and also provided useful estimates of total sugar levels.

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