If the leaves of your plants have turned yellow, you may be concerned about their health. And you do well since this could be compromised. The leaves turn that color for various reasons, such as excessive watering. However, if you do not engage in this bad practice, the problem could be a lack of iron. For this, the recommendation is the use of iron chelate.
Iron chelate is a kind of nutritional supplement, similar to the supplements of this mineral that we humans usually take. Discover what you should know about this deficiency corrector, capable of improving the health of your plants.
What is iron chelate?
Just like us, plants suffer from nutritional deficiencies and need extra help. Iron is essential for our green friends. Therefore, if you have a deficiency of this mineral, chelate could be the solution.
This nutritional supplement prevents plants from developing iron deficiency by not being able to absorb the mineral from the soil. It turns out that although the earth’s crust is rich in this element, there are some conditions that do not allow plants to absorb it.
An example of this is pH. If it is greater than 6, it makes the iron insoluble. Therefore, it becomes difficult to absorb and assimilate.
What causes a lack of iron in plants?
In humans, a lack of iron is one of the main causes of anemia. In plants, this deficiency is behind iron chlorosis, a common nutritional disorder in alkaline soils, that is, with a pH higher than 7.5.
It is characterized by the change of color in the leaves of the plants.
The disease has several phases:
- The yellow coloration only appears on the leaves .
- The coloration spreads throughout the plant.
- Necrosis begins. This appears first on the leaves and then spreads throughout the stem, ending in the death of the plant.
How to know that a plant is not assimilating iron?
When the yellow coloration appears on the leaves of the plant, it is warning you that there is a problem with the absorption and assimilation of iron. But how do you know that the yellow leaves are caused by a lack of iron and not by excessive watering?
In this case, you should look at the veins of the leaf. If these are green, while the rest of the leaf is yellow, it has an iron deficiency that must be solved with a dose of chelate.
Types of iron chelate
To prevent your plant from getting sick, there are different varieties of iron chelate. Discover them! So you know which one works best for you:
- Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA): is one of the most common types of chelate. However, keep in mind that it does not work if the pH is higher than 7.
- Hydroxyethylenediaminetriacetic acid (or HEDTA): Although a worthy adversary at high pH, its effectiveness is diminished in alkaline soils.
- Diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid (DTPA).
Other iron chelates include N, N′-ethylenediamine-bis(2-hydroxyphenyl)acetic acid (or EDDHA) and its variations: EDDHMA and EDDHSA.
What is the dose of iron chelate for the different types of crops?
The dose of iron chelate will depend on the type of crop. For example, if they are hydroponic or horticultural. Likewise, it varies from the plant, whether they are fruit tree or an olive grove.
Thus, the recommendation is that you raise the problem with an expert, which in this case may be one of the shop assistants. Ask him about the best type of supplement and the amounts to use.
Iron chelate is a nutritional supplement for your plants
Not all soils are ideal for your plants to grow. Before planting, or even if you have already planted, be sure to measure the pH. This way, you’ll know what to expect and if this is the reason your plants aren’t looking like they used to.
The chelate is an ideal complement to help your plants absorb the iron that a high pH prevents them from assimilating, so keep it on hand. Finally, check the composition of the fertilizer you give your vegetables. Make sure it contains essential minerals.