Podcast – Boron for Plants and Crops
Micronutrients play an important role in the life and growth of plants. Mineral deficiencies can lead to serious problems with the plants, such as stunted growth and rougher leaves. This can also result in interveinal chlorosis of leaves, purpling of leaf margins and petioles, and necrosis of young fruit or flowers.
As the human population continues to grow, so does our need for food. The global demand for agricultural production is expected to increase by 50% in the next 30 years. This means that we will need more and more crops grown on less land with fewer resources. Boron helps plants battle environmental stressors such as drought, salinity, and cold temperatures. It can also take care of the diseases which significantly reduce crop productivity. Industries and businesses that rely on plants for their products are more and more aware of the need to use them. In forestry, agriculture, and food pressing, there is a need to ensure that there’s enough boron.
What are the effects of boron deficiency in plants? Born is an important component of plant growth. It’s 40% present in cell walls and 60% in leaves. Deficiency can affect plant growth by restricting stem diameter. It also reduces chlorophyll production, which causes a reduction in photosynthesis rates.
Let’s look at boron dynamics and transport inside plants. The boron cycle begins in the soil and moves through plants, then evaporates into the air. However, while most rain falls back into the ocean, it can remain for centuries or millennia before getting out again by wind or human activity.
Just like oxygen in humans, boron evaporates out as fast as it comes in. But dynamics inside plants are not well understood. It is believed to enter from root hairs or other cell walls. They may also move across membranes within cells by passive diffusion.
The translocation and distribution of boron are also not clear, but plants can transport boron more easily than other nutrients.
So boron is an essential element for land plants. It prevents the plant from taking up toxic metals and increases its resistance to drought stress. It also improves the absorption of phosphorus, nitrogen, and other nutrients. Additionally, it improves cell wall integrity.
What does this all mean? What it means is that without boron in the soil, you’re likely to see stunted growth, or plants may even dial from lack of nutrition. In fact, many gardeners use boric acid on their roses or on their other plants. Studies show that it significantly increases flower production while reducing leaf disease incidents by up to 50%.
And that’s all as an introduction of boron into plants from plant growth. For more on the effects of boron on agriculture and for minerals in the production of crops, Please see Borates Today. Thanks for listening.