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Subsoil gravel horizon and maize root growth

I. Gravel concentration and bulk density effects


A series of factoral experiments involving the effects of gravel concentration in the subsoil horizon, the effect of inter-gravel bulk density, the depth of the surface soil above the gravel horizon and the interaction between soil moisture regime and gravel concentration, on growth and development of maize roots were conducted in the greenhouse. Increasing sub soil gravel concentration decreased the total porosity and the available waterholding capacity. Though the root growth of maize seedlings was adversely affected by gravel concentration above 20 per cent, lower concentration of gravels had a beneficial effect on roots. The root development and the leaf concentration of N, P and K improved with increasing depth of surface soil above the gravel horizon. The symptoms of mechanical impedance, such as thickening of root tips and profuse branching behind the tip were commonly observed on the root axis penetrating the gravelly horizon. re]19750916

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Babalola, O., Lal, R. Subsoil gravel horizon and maize root growth. Plant Soil 46, 337–346 (1977).

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  • Maize
  • Surface Soil
  • Gravel
  • Root Growth
  • Root Development