The uptake of selenium and iodine in chicory (Cichorium intybus L.) after foliar spraying

A. Kroflič, M. Germ, N. Kacjan-Maršić, A. Jerše, H. Šircelj, V. Stibilj
Selenium (Se) and iodine (I) are essential elements in humans and animals. However, their essentiality for plants is not confirmed yet. The main reason for insufficient intake of both elements by humans is low content of both elements in soil and food and feed plants including vegetables (El-Ramady et al., 2015; Jerše et al., 2017). Consequently, the uptake of plants and further transfer along the food chain is low. Interactions between Se (as selenite and selenate) and I (as iodate and iodide) uptake by chicory (Cichorium intybus L.) and their effect on selected morphological and physiological characteristics were studied. Seedlings were transplanted on the field and at the beginning of head formatting, chicory leaves were foliar sprayed with the following solutions: Milli-Q water (control), Se(IV), Se(VI), I(-I), I(V), Se(IV)+I(-I), Se(IV)+I(V), Se(VI)+I(-I) and Se(VI)+I(V). Concentrations of Se and I were 10 and 1000 mg L‑1, respectively. Chicory heads were sampled, lyophilized, milled and stored at
-20°C until analysis. Different treatments did not significantly affect yield (30-38 t ha‑1) and mass (970-1200 g) of chicory heads. Selenium content was enhanced up to 8-fold in comparison with control plants containing 26 ng Se g‑1 dry weight (DW). Iodine content in enriched chicory leaves was up to 730 ng g‑1, 7-fold higher than in control plants. Iodine in spraying solution had different effect on Se uptake by chicory and vice versa. Plants, treated with I(V) had lower amount of chlorophyll a, carotenoids and anthocyanins compared to the control while respiratory potential was higher in comparison to control indicating possible presence of stress in I(V) treated plants. However, Fv/Fm was similar in control and treated groups and close to theoretical maximum (0.83), showing that plants were in good condition.
Kroflič, A., Germ, M., Kacjan-Maršić, N., Jerše, A., Šircelj, H. and Stibilj, V. (2021). The uptake of selenium and iodine in chicory (Cichorium intybus L.) after foliar spraying. Acta Hortic. 1326, 145-152
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2021.1326.19
chicory, selenium, iodine, foliar application

Acta Horticulturae