Effect of zinc on chlorophyll contents, gas exchange attributes and zinc concentration in rice
Niaz Ahmed, Hafiz Zeeshan Hussain, Muhammad Arif Ali, Ashfaq Ahmad Rahi, Muhammad Saleem and Fiaz Ahmad
The deficiency of Zn is one of the major human’s health-related issues all over the world. Most food nutritionists suggest to take Zn fortified food to overcome the deficiency of Zn. However, our food is also becoming Zn deficient due to multiple factors, i.e., soil pH, low organic matter, high yielding varieties, over phosphorus application. In addition to the above, our farming community is also unaware of how they can examine the Zn deficiency symptoms. It is a fact that most cereals, i.e., maize and rice, are highly susceptible to Zn deficiency. Therefore, this study aimed to find out the relation of Zn deficiency with respect to chlorophyll content and gas exchange attributes that could be an important indicator for Zn deficiency or optimum level in cereals, i.e., rice. Results showed that chlorophyll contents and gas exchange attributes were significantly low in control (No Zn) over those treatments where Zn was applied at variable rates. The highest level of Zn also significantly enhanced chlorophyll a (134 and 65%), chlorophyll b (143 and 43%), total chlorophyll (142 and 60%), photosynthetic rate (102 and 59%), transpiration rate (68 and 43%) and stomatal conductance (60 and 111%) in both Super Basmati (SB) and KSK-434 rice varieties. In conclusion, chlorophyll content and gas exchange attribute reduction are major indicators of Zn deficiency in rice. For improvement in fine grains and coarse grains, rice 10 kg ha-1 Zn application is more economical for improvement in Zn concentration.
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