Selecting iodine-enriched vegetables and the residual effect of iodate application to soil
A greenhouse pot experiment was conducted to select vegetables for iodine uptake. The residual effect of iodate fertilization on the growth of and iodine uptake by spinach plants were also investigated. Six vegetables, including leafy vegetables (pakchoi [Brassica chinensis L.], spinach [Spinacia oleracea L.]), tuber vegetables (onion [Allium cepa L.]), shoot vegetables (water spinach [Ipomoea aquatica Forsk.], celery [Apium graveolens L.]), and root vegetables (carrot [Daucus carota var. sativa DC.]) were examined. Results showed that the concentrations of iodate in soil had significant effect on the biomass of edible parts of pakchoi and spinach (p<0.01), whereas the concentrations of iodate in soil had no significant effect on that of carrots, water spinach, celery, and onion. Iodine concentrations in edible parts of vegetables and the transfer factors (TFedible parts) of soil-to-edible parts of vegetables significantly increased with increasing iodine concentrations in soil (p<0.001), and iodine concentrations in edible parts and TFedible parts of spinach were much higher than those of other vegetables at any treatment. Both transfer coefficients for edible parts (TCedible parts) and for aerial parts (TCaerial parts) of vegetables changed differently with increasing iodine concentrations in the soil, and TCedible parts and TCaerial parts of spinach were higher than those of other vegetables. Therefore, spinach (leafy vegetable) was considered as an efficient vegetable for iodine biofortification. Further experiment showed that there is considerable residual effect of soil fertilization with iodate.