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The University of Southampton
Interdisciplinary Research Excellence

Insights into Soil-Plant Interactions ‘In Situ' Event

26 May 2015
Building 85, Room 2209 Highfield Campus University of Southampton

For more information regarding this event, please email Keith Daly at .

Event details

Professor Ann McNeill from The University of Adelaide Australia

Ann McNeill is an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Adelaide in the School of Agriculture, Food and Wine. 

Abstract:This talk will describe research in Australia that has used non-invasive techniques to study plant roots and nutrient cycling in situ largely in an agricultural context.

A stem wick-feeding technique was used to label plants with isotopes of phosphorus (33P) and nitrogen (15N) in order to estimate total quantities of these nutrient elements accumulated in root systems in situ in soil, and to trace the cycling of the root residues in situ after the shoots were removed.

Medical X-ray CT was used to visualise how soil constraints such as compaction and remediation measures such as ‘deep ripping’ influenced root system development in large soil cores taken from the field. Cores were characterised for porosity, pore size, connectivity and tortuosity before and after a plant was grown, and the exploration of old root channels by new roots was demonstrated.

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