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Advances in understanding iron cycling in soils, uptake/use by plants and ways of optimising iron-use efficiency in crop production

Code: 9781786766588
Yashbir Singh Shivay and Sunil Mandi, ICAR – Indian Agricultural Research Institute, India

Chapter synopsis: About 1.6 billion people worldwide suffer from anaemia caused by iron (Fe) deficiency. In plants, Fe is involved in photosynthesis, respiration and activation of enzymes. Low iron availability exists in calcareous and aerobic soil because most Fe is present in the fixed or oxidized form. The critical range for iron in soil is 10–6 to 10-5 M. Solubility of Fe is governed by various factors such as soil pH, redox potential and root exudates. Hence, there is a scope to increase Fe availability to plants and enhance uptake by adopting various approaches. Among agronomic approaches, foliar application is cost effective and shows an immediate effect. However, soil application of Fe and intercropping of cereals crops with legumes are best long-term options to control Fe-deficiency chlorosis. New fertilizer formulations such as use of nano-fertilizers applied to both soil and foliage are eco-friendly and cost effective. However, to feed the ever-increasing population in the future may require advanced techniques where biotechnology (transgenic) tools play an important role in Fe biofortification.

DOI: 10.19103/AS.2019.0062.15
Table of contents 1 Introduction 2 Status and forms of iron in soil 3 Iron solubility in soil 4 Factors affecting availability of iron in soils 5 Role, deficiency and toxicity of iron 6 Estimating iron content in soils and plants 7 Iron uptake strategies by crops 8 Strategies for optimizing iron-use efficiency 9 Conclusion 10 Future trends 11 Where to look for further information 12 References

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