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Silicon stimulates initial growth and chlorophyll a/b ratio in rice seedlings, and alters the concentrations of Ca, B, and Zn in plant tissues

Ramírez-Olvera, Sara Monzerrat, Trejo-Téllez, Libia Iris, Pérez-Sato, Juan Antonio, Gómez-Merino, Fernando Carlos
Journal of plant nutrition 2019 v.42 no.16 pp. 1928-1940
Oryza sativa, biomass, calcium, chlorophyll, crop quality, germination, nutrients, plant tissues, rice, roots, seedlings, shoots, silicon, stress tolerance, vegetative growth, zinc
Silicon (Si) is considered a beneficial element for plants due to the far-reaching benefits it confers, including enhanced growth, yield, and crop quality, as well as stress resistance. In this study, we evaluated the effect of Si during germination and initial growth (0.0, 0.5, 1.0, or 1.5 mM Si) and during vegetative growth (0, 1, 2, or 3 mM Si) in rice (Oryza sativa) cv. Morelos A-98. Si did not affect germination but stimulated seedling height, root length, number of roots, as well as fresh and dry biomass weight of shoots and roots during initial growth. During vegetative growth, the application of 3 mM Si significantly increased the chlorophyll a/chlorophyll b ratio, but no major changes were observed either in growth or in concentrations of most nutrients, with the exception of Ca (which increased with 3 mM Si), and B and Zn (which decreased in the presence of Si). In conclusion, applying Si had positive effects during the initial stage of growth, increasing seedling height, root length, root number, and fresh and dry biomass weight. Under our experimental conditions, Si did not affect germination and vegetative growth, but increased Ca concentrations and decreased B and Zn concentrations.