The objectives of these studies were to evaluate the effects of silicon on drought and shade tolerance of st. augustinegrass (Stenotaphrum secundatum). Studies were conducted during 2001 in a glasshouse at the University of Florida Turfgrass Research Envirotron in Gainesville. For both drought and shade evaluations, calcium silicate slag (CaSiO3) was pre-incorporated into pots with commercial potting soil at the rate of 3.36 kg·ha-1 (0.069 lb/1000 ft2). `FX-10' and `FHSA-115' st. augustinegrass were planted into 15.2-cm-diameter × 30.5-cm-deep (6 × 12 inches) plastic pots for the drought study and subjected to minimal irrigation. Under severe drought stress, silicon-amended plants had better responses than non-amended plants. Little improvement was seen under moderate drought stress. `Floratam' and genotype 1997-6 were placed under full sunlight or 50% to 70% shade. There was no benefit from use of silicon under shaded conditions. These findings suggest that silicon might provide improved tolerance to st. augustinegrass under severe drought stress.
Laurie E. Trenholm, Lawrence E. Datnoff and Russell T. Nagata
Jianjun Chen, Russell D. Caldwell, Cynthia A. Robinson and Bob Steinkamp
Silicon (Si) is the second most-abundant element in soils, and its concentration in soil solution ranges from 0.1 to 0.6 mm, which is the same concentration range as some of the major nutrient elements such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and sulfur. Increasing evidence has recently suggested that Si plays important roles in improving plant growth. However, little information is available on Si effects on container-grown ornamental plants, particularly since most are grown in soilless media where Si sources are greatly limited. The objectives of this research were to evaluate Si absorption and translocation in diverse container-grown ornamental plants and to determine whether Si absorption could improve plant growth. Liners from 39 plant species were potted in peat and pine bark-based soilless media and grown in a shaded greenhouse. Plants were fertigated with a Peter's 24–8–16 water-soluble fertilizer containing 0, 50, and 100 mg·L–1 of Si. Once marketable sizes were reached, plants were harvested and fresh and dry weights determined; Si and other nutrient elements in roots and shoots were measured. Results indicated that 32 of the 39 evaluated species were able to absorb Si, with large quantities further transported to shoots. Of the 32 Si-responsive species, 17 showed significant dry weight increases, whereas the other 15 only exhibited Si absorption and translocation with no apparent growth responses. The seven non-responsive plant species showed no significant increases in neither Si absorption and translocation, nor dry weight.
M. Chérif, J.G. Menzies, D.L. Ehret, C. Bogdanoff and R.R. Bélanger
Two experiments were conducted in separate locations, one at Université Laval in eastern Canada (Québec) and one at the Agassiz Research Station in western Canada (British Columbia), in an attempt to determine the effectiveness of soluble silicon (Si) against cucumber root disease caused by Pythium aphanidermatum Edson. Long English cucumber (Cucumis sativus L. cv. Corona) plants were grown either in a standard nutrient solution or in nutrient solutions supplemented with 1.7 mm (100 ppm) Si and inoculated or not with the pathogen. Supplying the solutions with 1.7 mm Si significantly reduced mortality and disease symptoms attributed to infection by P. aphanidermatum. Grown in presence of Si, plants infected with P. aphanidermatum showed a significant increase in yield, marketable fruit, and plant dry weight compared to Si-nonamended and infected plants. These beneficial effects were observed under both experimental conditions. The fruit yield of noninoculated plants was not affected by the presence of Si in the Agassiz experiment. However, Si-amended control plants were more productive in the experiment conducted at Laval, apparently because of contamination problems, which indicates that Si beneficial effects are most likely related to disease management.
Sophia Kamenidou and Todd Cavins
Silicon (Si) is a beneficial element to many agricultural crops. We found improved horticultural traits in our preliminary Si supplementation research on floricultural greenhouse crops produced in soilless substrates. The objective of this study was to establish optimum Si rates based on previous results and investigate the relationship of Si tissue and substrate content. Potassium silicate (KSiO3) weekly drenches (0, 50, 100, 150 mg·L-1 SiO2), media-incorporated KSiO3 flakes (0, 280, 400, 520 g·m-3 SiO2), and ashed rice hulls (0, 200, 270, 360 g·m-3 SiO2) were provided to Helianthusannuus`Ring of Fire'. Leaf, stem, and flower tissues as well as soilless substrate samples were collected for Si analysis. Several Si treatments resulted in plants with increased flower and stem diameter compared to untreated controls (P ≤ 0.05). Weekly drenches with KSiO3 (150 mg·L-1 SiO2), KSiO3 flakes (280 g·m-3 SiO2), and ashed rice hulls (360 g·m-3 SiO2) were the most efficient treatments based on the increased quality characteristics. Leaf tissue had the highest Si content, followed by flower, then stem tissue. Correlation analysis indicated that leaf and flower Si content was positively correlated with saturated media extract substrate samples (correlation coefficients r= 0.75 and 0.63, respectively).
Emily B. Merewitz and Sha Liu
would be a useful next step to help move Si into more products in the turfgrass industry. Sand is silicon dioxide, which causes Si to be the second most abundant element in the earth’s crust, and thus the utility of Si fertilizers in the turfgrass
Pat Bowen, Jim Menzies, David Ehret, Lacey Samuels and Anthony D.M. Glass
The effect of root or leaf applications of soluble Si on severity of grape (Vitis vinifera L.) powdery mildew [Uncinula necator (Schwein) Burrill] was determined. On potted plants, root-feeding at 1.7 mm Si had no effect on disease severity, but foliar sprays at 17 mm Si substantially reduced the number of mildew colonies that developed on inoculated leaves. Scanning electron micrographs showed that, on Si-sprayed leaves, hyphae did not develop in areas where thick Si deposits were present on the leaf surface; and where surface deposits were not present, Si was translocated laterally through the leaf and surrounded the appressoria. Leaves on plants that were fed Si via roots showed a similar deposition of Si surrounding the appressoria. On water-sprayed leaves and leaves from untreated plants, internal deposition of Si was more variable and generally less than on Si-sprayed or root-fed plants. Conidia germination and germtube development on agar media were weakly promoted by the presence of Si. Reduced severity of grape mildew by Si sprays may be partly due to a physical barrier to hyphal penetration and to a resistance response involving the lateral movement of Si and its deposition within the leaf at fungal penetration sites.
Augusto Ramírez-Godoy, María del Pilar Vera-Hoyos, Natalia Jiménez-Beltrán and Hermann Restrepo-Díaz
leaves. All foliar applications were made without adjuvant. The soil application was performed at the beginning of the test [0 week after treatment (WAT)], incorporating the Si fertilizer within the top 10 cm of the surface of the bag. Silicon application
M. Murshidul Hoque, Husein Ajwa, Mona Othman, Richard Smith and Michael Cahn
of the metabolic functions of K ( Marschner, 1995 ). Silicon (Si) and calcium (Ca) play a role in lettuce yield and quality. Some studies have found a weak correlation between lettuce yield and soil Ca ( Soundy and Smith, 1992 ). Although not
Tanja Mucha-Pelzer, Reinhard Bauer, Ekkehard Scobel and Christian Ulrichs
-Brinkmann, 2000 ). Many silica compounds that are commercially available contain high amounts of silicon dioxide (SiO 2 ). Usually SiO 2 powder consists of mostly crystalline forms, which are proven to have a harmful effect on the lungs if inhaled. Fortunately
Etienne L. LeRiche, Gefu Wang-Pruski and Valtcho D. Zheljazkov
, magnesium (Mg), potassium (K), sulfur (S), Fe, copper (Cu), sodium (Na), zinc (Zn), boron (B), manganese (Mn), aluminum (Al), silicon (Si), and chlorine (Cl)] in potato tubers of ‘Shepody’ and ‘Russet Burbank’. The second objective was to determine if the