Plant and Soil, 2004, Vol.258(1), pp.307-327
Soil solution composition changes with time and distance from the root surface as a result of mass flow, diffusion, plant nutrient uptake and root exudation. A model system was designed, consisting of a root compartment separated from the bulk soil compartment by a nylon net (30 μm mesh size), which enabled independent measurements of the change of soil solution composition and soil water content with increasing distance from the root surface (nylon net). K + concentration in the rhizosphere soil solution decreased during the initial growth stage (12 days after planting, DAP). Thereafter K + accumulated with time, due to mass flow as the dominating process. The extend of K + accumulation depended on the initial fertiliser application. As K + concentrations in soil solution increase, not only as a result of transport exceeding uptake, but also as a result of decreasing soil water content, it is hypothesised that K concentration in soil solution is not the only trigger for the activity of K transporters in membranes, but ABA accumulation in roots induced by decreasing soil matric potentials may add to the regulation. A strong decrease of rhizosphere pH with time is observed as a result of H + efflux from the roots in order to maintain cation-anion balance. In addition the K + to Ca 2+ ratio was altered continuously during the growing period, which has an impact on Ca 2+ uptake and thus firmness of cell walls, apoplast pH, membrane integrity and activity of membrane transporters. The value of osmotic potential in the rhizosphere soil solution increased with time indicating decreasing soil water availability. Modelling approaches based on the data obtained with the system might help to fill in the time gaps caused by the low temporal resolution of soil solution sampling method.
K ; matric potential ; osmotic potential ; pH ; rhizosphere ; soil solution
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