Skip to main content
Log in

Calibration of the Minolta SPAD-502 leaf chlorophyll meter

  • Technical Communication
  • Published:
Photosynthesis Research Aims and scope Submit manuscript

Abstract

Use of leaf meters to provide an instantaneous assessment of leaf chlorophyll has become common, but calibration of meter output into direct units of leaf chlorophyll concentration has been difficult and an understanding of the relationship between these two parameters has remained elusive. We examined the correlation of soybean (Glycine max) and maize (Zea mays L.) leaf chlorophyll concentration, as measured by organic extraction and spectrophotometric analysis, with output (M) of the Minolta SPAD-502 leaf chlorophyll meter. The relationship is non-linear and can be described by the equation chlorophyll (μmol m−2)=10(M0.265), r 2=0.94. Use of such an exponential equation is theoretically justified and forces a more appropriate fit to a limited data set than polynomial equations. The exact relationship will vary from meter to meter, but will be similar and can be readily determined by empirical methods. The ability to rapidly determine leaf chlorophyll concentrations by use of the calibration method reported herein should be useful in studies on photosynthesis and crop physiology.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Similar content being viewed by others

Abbreviations

Chl-:

chlorophyll

M-:

SPAD-502 meter value

References

  • Arnon DI (1949) Copper enzymes in isolated chloroplasts: Polyphenoloxidase in Beta vulgaris. Plant Physiol. 24: 1–15

    Google Scholar 

  • Blackmer TM, Schepers JS and Vigil MF (1993) Chlorophyll meter readings in corn as affected by plant spacing. Commun Soil Sci Plant Anal 24: 2507–2516

    Google Scholar 

  • Fox RH, Piekielek WP and Macneal KM (1994) Using a chlorophyll meter to predict nitrogen fertilizer needs of winter wheat. Commun Soil Sci Plant Anal 25: 171–181

    Google Scholar 

  • Fukshansky L, Martinez v. Remisowsky A, McClendon J, Ritterbosch A, Richter T and Mohr H (1993) Absorption spectra of leaves corrected for scattering and distributional error: A radiative transfer and absorption statistics treatment. Photochem Photobiol 57: 538–555

    Google Scholar 

  • Hardwick K and Baker NR (1973) In vivo measurement of chlorophyll content of leaves. New Phytol 72: 51–54

    Google Scholar 

  • Holden M (1976) Chlorophylls. In: Goodwin TW (ed) Chemistry and Biochemistry of Plant Pigments, pp 1–37. Academic Press, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Inada K (1965) Studies on a method for determining the deepness of green color and chlorophyll content of intact crop leaves and its practical applications. 2. Photoelectric characters of chlorophyllo-meter and correlation between the reading and chlorophyll content in leaves. Proc Crop Sci Soc Japan 33: 301–308

    Google Scholar 

  • Kaakeh W, Pfeiffer DG and Marini RP (1992) Combined effects of spirea aphid (Homoptera: Aphididae) and nitrogen fertilization on net photosynthesis, total chlorophyll content, and greenness of apple leaves. J Econ Entomol 85: 939–946

    Google Scholar 

  • Kirk JTO (1994) Light and Photosynthesis in Aquatic Ecosystems. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge

    Google Scholar 

  • MacNicol PK, Dudzinski ML and Condon BN (1976) Estimation of chlorophyll in tobacco leaves by direct photometry. Ann Bot 40: 143–152

    Google Scholar 

  • McClendon JH and Fukshansky L (1990a) On the interpretation of absorption spectra of leaves. II. The non-absorbedray of the sieve effect and the mean optical pathlength in the remainder of the leaf. Photochem Photobiol 51: 211–216

    Google Scholar 

  • McClendon JH and Fukshansky L (1990b) On the interpretation of absorption spectra of leaves. I. Introduction and the correction of leaf spectra for surface reflection. Photochem Photobiol 51: 203–210

    Google Scholar 

  • McClure WF (1969) Fiber-optic spectrophotometer for in vivo analysis of biological materials: Chlorophyll measurements. Trans Am Soc Agric Eng 12: 319–321

    Google Scholar 

  • Monje OA and Bugbee B (1992) Inherent limitations of nondestructive chlorophyll meters: A comparison of two types of meters. HortScience 27: 69–71

    Google Scholar 

  • Myers DA, Vogelmann TC and Bornman JF (1994) Epidermal focusing and effects on light utilization in Oxalis acetoselld. Physiol Plant 91: 651–656

    Google Scholar 

  • Nobel PS (1991) Physiochemical and Environmental Plant Physiology. Academic Press, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Piekielek WP and Fox RH (1992) Use of a chlorophyll meter to predict sidedress nitrogen requirements for maize. Agron J 84: 59–65

    Google Scholar 

  • Porra RJ, Thompson WA and Kreidemann PE (1989) Determination of accurate extinction coefficients and simultaneous equations for assaying chlorophylls a and b extracted with four different solvents: verification of the concentration of chlorophyll standards by atomic absorption spectroscopy. Biochim Biophys Acta 975: 384–394

    Google Scholar 

  • Rabinowitch EI (1951) Photosynthesis and Related Processes. Interscience Publishers, Inc., New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Turner FT and Jund MF (1991) Chlorophyll meter to predict nitrogen topdress requirement for semidwarf rice. Agron J 83: 926–928

    Google Scholar 

  • Uz M and Saygin O (1994) Determination of the light pathlength elongation in leaves by measuring P700 quantitatively. Photosynth Res 40: 175–179

    Google Scholar 

  • Vogelmann TC (1993) Plant tissue optics. Annu Rev Plant Physiol Plant Mol Biol 44: 231–251

    Google Scholar 

  • Wood CW, Reeves DW, Duffield RR and Edmisten KL (1992a) Field chlorophyll measurements for evaluation of corn nitrogen status. J Plant Nutri 15: 487–500

    Google Scholar 

  • Wood CW, Tracy PW, Reeves DW and Edmisten KL (1992b) Determination of cotton nitrogen status with a hand-held chlorophyll meter. J Plant Nutri 15: 1435–1448

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Markwell, J., Osterman, J.C. & Mitchell, J.L. Calibration of the Minolta SPAD-502 leaf chlorophyll meter. Photosynth Res 46, 467–472 (1995). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00032301

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00032301

Key words

Navigation