Sustainability, Vol. 11, Pages 2867: Effects of Artificial Light Treatments on Growth, Mineral Composition, Physiology, and Pigment Concentration in Dieffenbachia maculata `Compacta` Plants (Sustainability)
Specific wavebands may allow precise control of plant growth. However, light sources must be carefully evaluated before the large-scale use of supplemental light sources can be implemented. Dieffenbachia maculata “Compacta” plants were grown for 8 weeks in pots in a growth chamber under tightly controlled temperature and humidity in order to assess the effects of supplemental light. Three treatments were applied: (i) using 18-W fluorescent bulbs (T1), (ii) using the same bulbs with supplemental light emitting diodes (LEDs) (Pure Blue and Pure Red Mix-Light-Emitting Diodes (BR-LEDs)) (T2), and (iii) using high-efficiency TL5 fluorescents (T3). Plant biomass, mineral composition, and physiological and photosynthetic parameters were assessed under each light treatment. Total plant dry weight was highest in plants grown under treatments T1 and T3. Other differences were observed between different light treatments, including variation in biomass partitioning as well as N and K concentrations in roots, stems, and leaves. Further, proline and indole 3-acetic acid (IAA) levels were higher in plants grown under the T1 treatment, whereas total soluble sugars and starch were higher in plants grown under treatment T3. Plants grown under treatment T1 had the lowest chlorophyll concentrations. No differences were observed in organ water content and P concentration. T2 was not the best treatment, as expected. The model proposed a linear regression between integrated use of spectral energy (IUSE) and total dry weight (TDW), which showed a good relationship with an R2 value of 0.83. Therefore, we recommend this methodology to discern the effects of the different spectral qualities on plant biomass.