Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Plants, Soils, and Climate

Department name when degree awarded

Soil Physics

Committee Chair(s)

Sterling A. Taylor


Sterling A. Taylor


Zinc deficiencies occur in many fruit orchards in Utah even though the soil contains amounts of zinc that would normally be sufficient for good plant growth. The existing zinc problem in Utah is, therefore, one of availability.

Problems of zinc availability generally occur in the pH range of 6-8. Zinc deficiencies occurring within this pH range are more frequently found on well-aerated soils than on poorly aerated ones with other conditions being the same. It has been shown that carbon dioxide will convert both zinc hydroxide and zinc carbonate into more soluble bicarbonates with the concentration of Zn++ that is converted being a function of the carbon dioxide concentration (28). It is also known that if carbon dioxide is dissolved in solutions with pH values of 6-8 the predominate ion resulting will be bicarbonate. These facts suggest that one of the chemical species present resulting from dissolved carbon dioxide might be closely related to the problem of zinc availability.

Other studies have attempted to relate zinc availability to such factors as alkalinity, soil colloidal content, organic matter, and simple precipitation and have been successful in explaining the situation in some areas but do not seem to elucidate fully the conditions in Utah. This study represents the first attempt, as far as can be ascertained, to correlate zinc availability with bicarbonate ion concentration.



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