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HomeFoliar Fertilizers: Understanding Their Role in Crop Nutrition and Yield

Foliar Fertilizers: Understanding Their Role in Crop Nutrition and Yield

Foliar fertilizers can enhance productivity and significantly improve plant health. They are quickly becoming the fertilizer of choice for farmers due to the immense benefits they offer to crops, the soil and the surrounding ecosystem, and because they’re the more environmentally sound option compared to other fertilizer options.

An ideal foliar fertilizer contains three beneficial strains of bacteria and fungi — photosynthetic bacteria, vegetative strains, and bacillus spores. These microorganisms are essential tools in elevating the nutrient uptake of crops.

Here’s a brief overview of how the three work independently:

  • Photosynthetic: as the name suggests, photosynthetic bacteria offer energy from light while boosting carbon and nitrogen levels. Further, they degrade potentially harmful toxins in the soil while providing an oxygen supply to roots.
  • Vegetative: these strains break down toxic chemicals and complex organics, offering immediate nutrition to crops.
  • Bacillus: bacillus spores improve plant vigour by adding hormones and auxins to the soil.

A powerful combination of these microbial bacteria and fungi in one foliar fertilizer can work effectively to improve your crop nutrition, and, consequentially, the crop yield. Here’s how.

Foliar Biologicals Mobilize Nutrients

The microorganisms that are seen in foliar biologicals help to mobilize nutrients like phosphorus —and phosphorous is essential to seedlings and helps with the development of the growing tip of the crop. They also help with carbon and nitrogen fixation — the conversion of nitrogen in its molecular form into nitrogen that the plant can use.

Nitrogen is vital to plant growth as it is a critical factor in chlorophyll. Without adequate nitrogen, crops will yellow, will be underdeveloped, and their yield will be low.

They Improve Root Development

A foliar biological will improve the soil structure by reducing compaction and supporting stability — a crucial element for plant growth. Compacted soil directly contributes to stunted root growth; stunted roots reduce the crops’ ability to absorb water and nutrients, and they limit oxygen intake around the root system. Such restrictions result in struggling crops and a reduced yield.

Further, foliar fertilizer has been shown to boost root growth — widening the roots’ spread and strengthening the root ball. This enables the crops to take in a higher level of H20 and nutrients from the surrounding soil.

They Reverse the Effects of Detrimental Fertilizers

While low-salt fertilizers can foster healthier plants that are stronger and have a higher yield, fertilizers which are too high in salt can have detrimental effects on plant growth, all while contributing to increased salinity in the soil. Too much salt in the soil restricts the nutrient uptake for crops.

Fortunately, foliar biologicals applied to the soil can reverse the effects of high soluble salt fertilizers by helping to release the phosphate trapped in the earth, and by converting nitrogen into a usable form. Nitrogen greatly buoys the nutrients available to the crop, boosting plant growth and grain yield.

Foliar Biologicals Can Protect Seeds

Foliars can protect the seeds from disease in the soil. They also penetrate the seed's hull, which automatically expedites the germination process while speeding up crop emergence and elevating overall plant vigour.

The Takeaway on Foliar Fertilizers

Foliar fertilizers can work to reduce salinity in the soil, better organic matter, breakdown toxins and provide vital nutrients to crops — greatly improving their yield. To learn more about foliar biologicals, chat with a sustainable farm store today.

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