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A study was made of iron absorption and translocation in the Mimi variety of barley and the Saturn variety of rice. Various iron chelates were used as sources of iron in nutrient solutions. Radioactive iron was used in some experiments to investigate absorption and translocation of iron in both plant species.

Plants were grown in nutrient solutions with different levels of iron to compare the chlorophyll content, dry weight and iron content in shoots and roots. It was found that iron deficiency decreased chlorophyll content and iron content in tissue and also decreased growth of the shoots and roots. An iron chelate concentration of 10-6 M was found adequate to prevent iron deficiency. Higher iron concentrations did not increase growth or chlorophyll contents.

All of the iron chelates used were satisfactory iron sources for barley and rice; however, iron added as HEDrA or EDrA was found to be absorbed and translocated more readily by barley than iron supplied as more stable chelates.

Iron deficient barley plants transported more iron to the shoots when iron was restored than did normal plants. Once the iron requirement of the plant had been satisfied, less iron was absorbed by the plant.

Factors recognized as favoring iron translocation were a lower pH in their growth medium and for rice lower phos­phorus levels in the medium. Even relatively high levels of phosphorus in the nutrient solution did not inhibit trans­location of iron in barley.



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Department Name

UNM Biology Department

First Committee Member (Chair)

Gordon Verle Johnson

Second Committee Member

William Clarence Martin

Third Committee Member

Howard J Dittmer

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Biology Commons