Date of this Version
Plant Prod. Sci. 2(4): 227-231 (1999)
Chlorophyll meter (SPAD) is a convenient tool to estimate leaf nitrogen (N) concentration of rice plants. There is no information on the effects of leaf phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) concentration on SP AD readings and on the relationship between SPAD values and leaf N concentration in the literature. In 1996 dry season, cv IR72 was grown at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) under various N, P and K fertilizer combinations. SPAD measurements were made on the topmost fully expanded leaves at mid-tillering and panicle initiation. The leaves were then detached, dried and analyzed for N, P and K. The SPAD values were highly correlated with leaf N concentration (r = 0.93 to 0.96). Fertilizer-K application did not affect SP AD values, leaf N concentration, or the relationship between the two. Phosphorus deficiency reduced leaf N concentration at mid-tillering, but increased leaf N concentration at panicle initiation when the same amount of N was applied. The SPAD values were 1 to 2 units greater for zero-P plants than P-treated plants at a given leaf N concentration at mid-tillering. At panicle initiation, the relationship between SPAD values and leaf N concentration was not significantly affected by leaf P status. These results suggest that a different regression equation between SP AD values and leaf N concentration should be used to estimate leaf N concentration of P-deficient and P-sufficient rice leaves at vegetative stage using a SPAD.