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Differential responses to K deficiency among soybean cultivars

P. W. G. SALE and L. C. CAMPBELL
Plant and Soil
Vol. 104, No. 2 (1987), pp. 183-190
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/42936870
Page Count: 8
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Differential responses to K deficiency among soybean cultivars
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Abstract

The seed yield per unit of potassium applied differed for five soybean cultivars which were grown to maturity under different Ê regimes in a glasshouse. Whereas Dodds was the most responsive cultivar to moderate increases in Ê supply, the cultivar Bragg was the most efficient in its ability to produce seed with low levels of available K; Lee and Forest were the least efficient cultivars while Bossier and Dodds were of intermediate efficiency. The basis for the efficiency of cv. Bragg was that the growth of its tops, as indicated by mature stem weights and its roots, were less affected by reduced K supply than those of other cultivars. This enabled it to produce more pods under K-deficient regimes, resulting in a greater seed yield per plant. The percentage reduction in oil/protein ratios in the seed of the five cultivars under moderate K deficiency correlated closely with reductions in seed yield. However, changes in this ratio were poorly related to the K percentages in the seed. All cultivars experienced an impairment of plant senescence under K deficiency as evidenced by a reduction in leaf abcission and a delay in pod maturity. The existence of genetic diversity in K-use efficiency means that breeding programmes could utilize K-efficient germplasm in developing new cultivars for soils not naturally high in potassium.

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