Effects of LED spectra on growth, gas exchange, antioxidant activity and nutritional quality of vegetable species
This research aimed to investigate the effects of three LED spectra on growth, gas exchange, antioxidant activity and nutritional quality of three vegetable species. The compressible vegetable facilities (CVF) were developed and three kinds of typical LED lights (spectra) were set, including white LED light (W), red-blue-green LED light (RBG), and red-blue-white LED light (RBW). Three vegetable species, i.e. lettuce (Lactuca sativa L. cv. Rome), cherry radish (Raphanus sativas L. cv. Hongxin) and cherry tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum M. cv. Mosite), were chosen and grown (matrix culture) in the three LED lights for 40, 40 and 100 days, respectively. The results indicated that the vegetable plants grew well and were compact in the RBG and RBW treatments. There was the highest biomass or fruit (tomato) in the RBG treatment and the least one in the W treatment for three vegetable species. There were no significant differences in harvest index, ratio of shoot to root, and water content among three treatments. The production efficiency values of 9.0-9.7, 9.9-13.5 and 11.8-12.5 g DW d-1 m-2 for lettuce, radish and tomato plants in the RBG and the RBW treatments were higher than those in the W treatment. The photosynthetic and transpiration rates of three vegetable species in the RBG treatment were the highest among three treatments and the W treatment had the least one. There were significant effects of three spectra on antioxidant activities of three vegetable species. Higher PPFD percentages of blue in the RBG light and the RBW light increased the antioxidant activities of all vegetable plants compared the W light. But it had no significant difference between the RBG light and the RBW. The organic components including soluble sugar (SS) and protein (Prt) of lettuce and radish plants were affected significantly by three spectra, but not for tomato plants. The contents of Mg and Zn of radish plants in the RBG treatment were higher than those in other treatments. There were significant positive effects of RBW treatment on the contents of N and Mg of tomato plants. The different spectra did not affect the contents of N-NO3 and Cu of vegetable plants. This study demonstrated that the RBG light (spectrum) significantly enhanced the growth, gas exchange, antioxidant activity of the lettuce, radish, and tomato cultivars used in this study, and there are significant effects of different LED spectra on the nutritional quality (including organic components and several mineral elements) of the different species.