Mastering rootzone environment

Root zone environment is directly related to our crop growth, development and health. Therefore it is very important to understand what is going on underneath our plants. 

There are three primary aspects of our rootzone environment:

  • Nutrient content
  • pH
  • Electrical conductivity

Nutrient content is a key factor in crop production. Based on crop nutrition plants are able to stay vegetative, bloom or produce fruit. We can control their health by avoiding any nutrient deficiency or toxicity. Basically by understanding plant nutrition you will have one of the most powerful tools in crop production. Most required nutrients in plants are called “Macronutrients”. These nutrients are essential and required in high quantities. Primary macronutrients are N (nitrogen), P (phosphorus) and K (potassium). Secondary macronutrients are Ca (calcium), Mg (magnesium) and S (sulfur). The rest of essential nutrients in plant nutrition are called “micronutrients”: Fe (iron), Mn (manganese), Zn (zinc), Cu (copper), B (boron), Mo (molybdenum), Ni (nickel), Cl (chloride). Micronutrients are mostly involved in enzyme function and are required in smaller amounts. Si (Silicon) is another element that is not essential but may improve the health of your plant. Si is commonly found in soil and can aid in plant structure and strength creating some resistance to environmental stresses.

Read more at Hort Americas (Karla Garcia and Deirdre Hughes)

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