Agronomy and Horticulture Department


Date of this Version



AAES Journal No. 3-861036


U.S. Government Work


Five tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb.) clonal lines with diverse root and xylem diameters were grown in nutrient solutions with magnesium (Mg) concentrations of 42, 125 and 250 µm and potassium K concentrations of 133 and 333 µm. Leaf Mg concentrations increased with increasing Mg rates at both low and high K concentrations. The tall fescue line with the largest root and xylem diameters had low leaf Mg concentrations, indicating a possible increased Mg tetany potential when consumed by cattle. The response of the K/(Mg+Ca) ratio in the plant, an indicator of tetany potential, to varying solution Mg at low and high K was determined for each of the five lines. No Hg effects or interactions were significant. Line, K, and line x K effects were all significant for the K/(Mg+Ca) ratios. The line with the largest root and xylem diameters had the highest tetany potential (highest cation ratio). Higher solution K gave higher K/(Hg+Ca) ratios.