Here is Steve talking about plant nutrition
Plants are very much like us humans in that that they don’t function as well on a poor diet.
As a grower you will want your crop to perform to the best of its ability and that is why you must feed accordingly.
When you look at a crop you might see leaf discolouration, root abnormalities, poor growth areas, old leaves dying, new leaves dying, weak floppy plants, scorched leaf edges, shrivelled grains, fewer tillers etc etc.....
But don’t let your eyes deceive you ... deficiency symptoms can appear very similar.
one example is Nitrogen and Sulphur;
If you have an abundance of one nutrient in can induce a deficiency of another, for instance...
You see what you think looks like a Zinc shortage, but this could be caused by excessive Phosphate levels.
Why do you want Zinc ? Well - it is necessary for chlorophyll formation, it aids root development and production of plant growth hormones.
A weakened less healthy crop will be more susceptible to other stresses, so It may also be the case that the plant is looking a little off colour from other factors, like drought, like disease, herbicide residues, insects pressure or soil compaction…… all of which can manifest visually.
In Fact, what you actually see could, quite often, be the result of multiple deficiencies, toxicity’s and stresses all occurring at the same time.
But just to throw a spanner in the works….. plants can also be deficient without showing any visual symptoms at all.
Look The point is, if you only visually identify symptoms
you may not get the complete picture.
So what is the solution?
Testing. Testing. Testing.
Take the samples and let the lab tell you exactly what Nutrition the plant does or does not have.
Getting the right Nutrition is the key to keeping your crop fighting fit, .....it is so important to not give the pathogens and diseases a chance.
Applying the right nutrients at the right time will provide your crop with the nutritional tools it needs to fight against disease pressure and grow well.