, Volume 160, Issue 2, pp 97-101

Changes in percentage organic carbon content during ontogeny

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Abstract

Changes in percentage organic carbon content were assessed during the first five weeks of growth of Uniculm barley (Hordeum vulgare) and Brussels sprouts (Brassica oleracea) plants grown in controlled-environment conditions at two constant temperatures, 16° and 22°C. Foliage (leaf laminae), stem, and root material was assayed in both species, together with leaf sheaths of barley and cotyledon laminae of Brussels sprouts. In barley, there was a decline in percentage organic carbon content with increasing foliage age in plants grown at 22°C, but in sheath material there was no significant change at either temperature. Root material showed a decline in percentage carbon content at both growth temperatures, whereas stems showed the opposite trend. Similar results were found in Brussels sprouts, with an overall decline in percentage carbon content in foliage at 22°C and a rise in stem material at both growth temperatures. However, roots showed no significant change in percentage carbon content over the experimental period. The results demonstrate that percentage organic carbon content may change during plant growth.