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Soil Science and Plant Nutrition








The nutrient uptake and allocation of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) seedlings at different root-zone temperatures (RZT) and different concentrations of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) nutrients were examined. Plants were grown in a nutrient solution for 30 d at two root-zone temperatures (a diurnally fluctuating ambient 10°C-RZT and a constant 20° C-RZT) with the aerial parts of the plants maintained at ambient temperature (10°C -30°C). Based on a Hoagland nutrient solution, seven N, P, and K nutrient concentrations were supplied to the plants at each RZT. Results showed that total plant and shoot dry weights under each nutrient treatment were significantly lower at low root-zone temperature (10°C-RZT) than at elevated root-zone temperature (20°C-RZT). But higher root dry weights were obtained at 10°C-RZT than those at 20°C-RZT. Total plant dry weights at both 10°C-RZT and 20°C-RZT were increased with increased solution N concentration, but showed different responses under P and K treatments. All estimated nutrient concentrations (N, P, and K) and uptake by the plant were obviously influenced by RZT. Low root temperature (10°C-RZT) caused a remarkable reduction in total N, P, and K uptake of shoots in all nutrient treatments, and more nutrients were accumulated in roots at 10 degrees C-RZT than those at 20°C-RZT. N, P, and K uptakes and distribution ratios in shoots were both improved at elevated root-zone temperature (20° C-RZT). N supplies were favorable to P and K uptake at both 10°C-RZT and 20°C-RZT, with no significantly positive correlation between N and P, or N and K uptake. In conclusion, higher RZT was more beneficial to increase of plant biomass and mineral nutrient absorption than was increase of nutrient concentration. Among the three element nutrients, increasing N nutrient concentration in solution promoted better tolerance to low RZT in cucumber seedlings than increasing P and K. In addition, appropriately decreased P concentration favors plant growth.


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Original Publication Citation

Yan, Q. Y., Duan, Z. Q., Mao, J. D., Li, X., & Dong, F. (2012). Effects of root-zone temperature and N, P, and K supplies on nutrient uptake of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) seedlings in hydroponics. Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, 58(6), 707-717. doi:10.1080/00380768.2012.733925