Differences between soil solutions obtained from rhizosphere and non-rhizosphere soils by water displacement and soil centrifugation

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Lorenz, S. E., Hamon, R. E. and McGrath, S. P. 1994. Differences between soil solutions obtained from rhizosphere and non-rhizosphere soils by water displacement and soil centrifugation. European Journal of Soil Science. 45 (4), pp. 431-438.

AuthorsLorenz, S. E., Hamon, R. E. and McGrath, S. P.

Soil solution was obtained from potted rhizosphere or non-rhizosphere soils by water displacement or soil centrifugation. The pH of the displaced solutions was lower than that of bulk soils when solutions were obtained from non-rhizosphere soil, although it increased as plants grew. This increase probably reflected true changes in rhizosphere pH, generated by the uptake by plants of NO3-N. In contrast, the pH of soil centrifugates was usually close to that of the bulk soils, implying that buffering by colloids had occurred during sampling. Concentrations of elements in solutions from non-rhizosphere soil were similar for both methods when soils were incubated at ambient pCO(2). However, when non-rhizosphere soils were incubated at elevated pCO(2), displacement solutions had lower pH values, and much larger concentrations of elements, compared to soil centrifugates. Comparison of mass flow of elements versus actual plant uptake showed that Ca and Mg accumulated, while K, Zn and Cd were depleted from the rhizosphere. Displacement solutions showed this accumulation or depletion of the elements more clearly than soil centrifugates. These differences were attributed to the fact that, at constant soil moisture, the rhizosphere developed mainly in larger pores, which were sampled by displacement. With centrifugation, a mixture of pore sizes was sampled, so that rhizosphere solution was only obtained when all of the soil had become rhizosphere. Soil centrifugates obtained after 22 days of growth also contained higher concentrations of organic carbon than displacement solutions, indicating contamination due to the disruption of roots and/or micro-organisms. We conclude that water displacement is suitable for sampling solution from light to medium textured rhizosphere or non-rhizosphere soils and that soil centrifugation is only of limited suitability.

KeywordsSoil Science
Year of Publication1994
JournalEuropean Journal of Soil Science
Journal citation45 (4), pp. 431-438
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1111/j.1365-2389.1994.tb00528.x
Open accessPublished as non-open access
Funder project or code923

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