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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Effect of Nutrition on Trifolium hirtum Inoculated with Rhizobium trifolii1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 20 No. 4, p. 489-495
    Received: Sept 13, 1955

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  1. Alston W. Specht,
  2. Lewis W. Erdman,
  3. Ura Mae Means and
  4. John W. Resnicky2,3



The growth and chemical composition of Trifolium hirtum plants inoculated with effective strains of Rhizobium trifolii and grown in sand cultures in the greenhouse were studied in two experiments. In the first, element ratios remained constant, but a complete nutrient solution of three concentration levels with and without supplementary nitrogen was used. In the second experiment, two levels of supply each of potassium, calcium, and magnesium were used without supplementary nitrogen in a 2 × 2 × 2 factorial experimental design.

The highest yields in the two experiments were obtained in the first one when supplementary nitrogen was supplied to the plants in the nutrient solution. This indicated that in these experiments maximum yields were not possible with symbiotically fixed nitrogen alone. The data also indicate that symbiotic nitrogen fixation and yield of T. hirtum are closely related to the interrelation of the levels of supply of potassium, calcium, and magnesium. The results of these experiments show that this plant is very sensitive to its nutrient supply, and this characteristic suggests a delicate nutrient-balance requirement to achieve the most efficient symbiotic nitrogen fixation and the best crop yields.

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