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The ABA concentrations of leaves, roots, soils and transport fluids of chickpea and lupin plants growing in acid (pH=4.8) and alkaline (pH=8.0) soils and an acid soil with an alkaline subsoil and an alkaline soil with an acid subsoil were measured with the aim of explaining the poor growth of narrow-leafed lupins in alkaline soil. The ABA concentration in the leaves was higher in lupin than chickpea, but did not differ when the plants were grown in alkaline compared to acid soil. The ABA concentration of the roots and xylem sap of lupin did not differ significantly when grown in acid or alkaline soil. Chickpea roots and xylem sap had, however, lower ABA concentrations in acid soil. The ABA concentration in the soil solution was higher in the acid than in the alkaline soil. Roots of lupin and chickpea showed no suberization of the hypodermis or exodermis whether grown aeroponically or hydroponically and the pH of the cytoplasm did not change significantly when root cells of lupin and chickpea were exposed to external pHs of 4.8 or 8.0. The chickpea roots had greater suberization of the endodermal cells adjacent to radial xylem rays and maintained a slightly higher vacuolar pH than lupin in both acid and alkaline external media, but these small differences are insufficient to explain the reductions in lupin growth in alkaline soil.

Original publication




Journal article


Plant and Soil

Publication Date





191 - 199