Neighbouring plants modify maize root foraging for phosphorus:coupling nutrients and neighbours for improved nutrient-use efficiency

Zhang, D. and Lyu, Y. and Li, H. and Tang, X. and Hu, R. and Rengel, Z. and Zhang, F. and Whalley, W.R. and Davies, W.J. and Cahill, J.F. and Shen, J. (2020) Neighbouring plants modify maize root foraging for phosphorus:coupling nutrients and neighbours for improved nutrient-use efficiency. New Phytologist, 226 (1). pp. 244-253. ISSN 0028-646X

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Abstract

Nutrient distribution and neighbours can impact plant growth, but how neighbours shape root‐foraging strategy for nutrients is unclear. Here, we explore new patterns of plant foraging for nutrients as affected by neighbours to improve nutrient acquisition. Maize (Zea mays) was grown alone (maize), or with maize (maize/maize) or faba bean (Vicia faba) (maize/faba bean) as a neighbour on one side and with or without a phosphorus (P)‐rich zone on the other in a rhizo‐box experiment. Maize demonstrated root avoidance in maize/maize, with reduced root growth in ‘shared’ soil, and increased growth away from its neighbours. Conversely, maize proliferated roots in the proximity of neighbouring faba bean roots that had greater P availability in the rhizosphere (as a result of citrate and acid phosphatase exudation) compared with maize roots. Maize proliferated more roots, but spent less time to reach, and grow out of, the P patches away from neighbours in the maize/maize than in the maize/faba bean experiment. Maize shoot biomass and P uptake were greater in the heterogeneous P treatment with maize/faba bean than with maize/maize system. The foraging strategy of maize roots is an integrated function of heterogeneous distribution of nutrients and neighbouring plants, thus improving nutrient acquisition and maize growth. Understanding the foraging patterns is critical for optimizing nutrient management in crops.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
New Phytologist
Additional Information:
This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Zhang, D., Lyu, Y., Li, H., Tang, X., Hu, R., Rengel, Z., Zhang, F., Whalley, W.R., Davies, W.J., Cahill, J.F., Jr. and Shen, J. (2019), Neighbouring plants modify maize root foraging for phosphorus: coupling nutrients and neighbours for improved nutrient‐use efficiency. New Phytol. doi:10.1111/nph.16206 which has been published in final form at https://nph.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/nph.16206 This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2700
Subjects:
ID Code:
139119
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
11 Dec 2019 14:45
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
16 Sep 2020 05:59