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Title: Effect of gypsum application on mineral composition in peanut pod walls and seeds

item PATHAK, BHUVAN - University Of Florida
item JAIN, MUKESH - University Of Florida
item TILLMAN, BARRY - University Of Florida
item Grusak, Michael
item GALLO, MARIA - University Of Florida

Submitted to: Crop Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/1/2013
Publication Date: 7/1/2013
Citation: Pathak, B.P., Jain, M., Tillman, B.L., Grusak, M.A., Gallo, M. 2013. Effect of gypsum application on mineral composition in peanut pod walls and seeds. Crop Science. 53:1658-1667.

Interpretive Summary: Peanuts are grown in sandy soils, which often have low levels of plant-required mineral nutrients, such as calcium. For many soil types, peanut farmers apply gypsum, a calcium fertilizer, in order to improve peanut yields and the quality of the harvested seeds. There is little information on the effect of soil calcium application on the plant's uptake of other minerals, or the delivery of these minerals to the pod walls and seeds. Because the overall nutritional quality of peanut, as a food crop, depends on all minerals, we wanted to know how soil calcium treatments might alter the concentration of other minerals in peanut seeds. We conducted field studies with two peanut varieties, and different gypsum soil treatments, in which we harvested and analyzed pod walls and seeds for various minerals. We found that gypsum treatment resulted in higher concentrations of calcium, sulfur, and zinc in seeds, but slight decreases in phosphorus and sodium concentrations. There were no effects on any other minerals studied. These results have provided useful information on how best to maintain peanut yield and seed nutritional quality in the future.

Technical Abstract: Alleviation of soil-Ca deficiency through gypsum amendment increases the yield potential and ensures high seed quality in peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.). The effects of gypsum treatment, plant life cycle stage, and the fruit development stages on the accrual of several essential minerals (Ca, S, Mg, P, Cu, Ni, Mn, Zn, and Fe) and Na were studied for three growing seasons in the pod walls and seeds of two runner varieties, C-99R and Georgia Green. Ca concentration was nearly two-fold higher in pod walls compared to seeds, irrespective of gypsum treatment and cultivar differences. Significant increases in Ca and S, and a decrease in P concentration in pod walls and seeds, and a marginal decline in seed-Mg concentration were discernible following gypsum treatment. Na concentration decreased in the pod walls, and Zn concentration increased in the seeds due to gypsum treatment. Progression in the plant life cycle stage was positively correlated with Ca accrual in both pod walls and seeds. The small-seeded cv. Georgia Green showed tissue-specific increases in the acquisition of Ca, Mg, and Zn in pod walls and seeds, and a decrease in P concentration in the seeds as compared to the large-seeded cv. C-99R. Compared to the respective seed maturation stages, the pod walls had lower S, Mg, P, K, and Zn, and higher Ca, Cu, Ni, Mn, Fe, and Na concentrations. While Ca, S, Mg, P, K, Zn, Fe, and Na concentrations declined, Mn concentration increased in both pod walls and seeds during fruit development.