Arcand, M. M., Knight, J. D. and Farrell, R. E. 2013. Temporal dynamics of nitrogen rhizodeposition in field pea as determined by15N labeling. Can. J. Plant Sci. 93: 941-950. Assessing the contribution of symbiotically fixed N2 to soil from pulse crops necessitates a full accounting of the total crop residue N remaining in the field after seed harvest. Below-ground N, including root and rhizodeposit N, comprises an important component of this total plant N balance - without it the N input to soil is underestimated. Under controlled conditions in a greenhouse, N in intact roots and N rhizodeposition were quantified in field pea (Pisum sativum L.) using the cotton-wick 15N labeling technique. Plants were supplied with 15N on a continuous basis and harvested at the vegetative stage (nine leaves unfolded), flowering, and maturity. As the plants aged, the 15N enrichment in the rhizosphere soil decreased, whereas that in the bulk soil increased, suggesting that N released as root exudates comprised a more important proportion of N rhizodeposition in plants at the early vegetative stage compared with mature plants. In mature plants, N rhizodeposition was comprised predominantly of N associated with root turnover. The contribution of N rhizodeposition recovered in soil to the total plant N balance decreased from 17.8% at the vegetative stage harvest, to 12.3% at flowering, and finally to 7.5% at maturity. However, the total amount of root-derived N released to soil by pea increased with plant development. Below-ground N, including N rhizodeposition and N in intact roots contributed 11.3% to the total plant N balance of mature pea.
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