Plant and Soil

, Volume 166, Issue 2, pp 181–185

Transfer of nitrogen from damaged roots of white clover (Trifolium repens L.) to closely associated roots of intact perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L)

  • D. J. Hatch
  • P. J. Murray
Research Article


An experiment is described in which the magnitude of N transferred from damaged white clover roots to perennial ryegrass was determined, using 15N labelling of the grass plant. There was no effect on the growth and N-fixation of the clover plants after removing part of the root system. The 15N data suggested that N had been acquired by all grass plants, even in plants grown alone with no further N supplied after labelling. However, after quantifying the mobile and stored N pools of the grass plants it was evident that significant transfer of N from clover to grass only took place from damaged clover roots. Dilution of the atom% 15N in the roots of the grass plants grown alone, and in association with undamaged clover roots, was explained by remobilisation of N within the plant.

Key words

mobile N N transfer 15root damage stored N white clover 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. J. Hatch
    • 1
  • P. J. Murray
    • 1
  1. 1.North Wyke Research StationInstitute of Grassland and Environmental ResearchOkehamptonUK

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