This article examines the Effects of nutrient deficiency on plant growth and the mechanism involved in nutrient uptake. You will learn about the importance of pH and pore space of soil in nutrient uptake. Finally, you will learn the role of nutrient availability in plant growth especially the grandaddy bruce strain and development. Ultimately, you will know if your plants are growing in the right conditions.
Table of Contents
Impact of nutrient deficiency on plant growth
There are several factors that contribute to the impact of nutrient deficiency on plants, including soil pH, plant root system structure, and available water. When the soil lacks these components, plants show different reactions to the deficiencies. The most common changes include inhibition of primary root growth, increased lateral root growth, increased shoot density, and an increase in root hair. Fortunately, there are many ways to remedy a nutrient deficiency and continue the plant’s life cycle.
Although most nutrient deficiencies are caused by a lack of available nutrients in the soil, some unfavorable growing conditions can also limit plant uptake. For example, the pH of the soil may prevent the plant from absorbing some nutrients, while others are more accessible at specific pH levels. The impact of nutrient deficiency on plant growth can be obvious in plant symptoms, including yellowing leaves and stems.
Mechanisms involved in nutrient uptake by plants
Plants cannot simply grow and absorb nutrients in the soil. They have to enter the plant’s root and be absorbed by a vast array of root hairs. These hairs are associated with a variety of fungi called mycorrhizae, which assist the movement of nutrients from the soil to the plant’s root. There are three mechanisms by which nutrient reach the root surface and be absorbed by the plant. They include diffusion, mass flow, and root interception.
Plants have evolved many mechanisms for surviving in nutrient-limited soils. Some of these mechanisms are inherent in the plant, while others are acquired through the evolution of the plant. In most cases, the most common adaptation is the change in root structure, which increases the distribution of resources to the overall root system. In addition, this increases root to shoot ratios in nutrient-limited plants.
Impact of soil pore space on nutrient uptake by plants
Soil pore space is a key determinant of plant nutrient uptake. Pore space can be large or small. Large pore spaces facilitate leaching of nutrients. Pore space can also affect microbial activity, which is an important part of organic matter decomposition. The diagram below shows the different components of soil texture. Increased pore space means better availability of nutrients for plants.
The EC in a 0.70 L m-2 h-1 solution is 0.5 to 1.0 dS m-1. EC can also be calculated by multiplying the nutrient concentration by 10 to obtain the maximum nutrient uptake. The maximum nutrient uptake by plants is the product of the EC and total root mass times the maximum uptake per unit mass of the roots.
Impact of soil pH on nutrient uptake by plants
Soil pH affects plant nutrient uptake in a variety of ways. Specifically, it may affect the amount of Fe and Zn available to the roots. Higher pH values cause the plants to produce less foliar Fe, whereas lower pH levels increase foliar Fe. Therefore, plants’ response to pH levels in the soil may be a complex combination of physiological, nutritional, and water transport processes. A sand culture system might offer a more natural environment for root-zone growth.
High pH reduces the availability of mineral nutrients in the soil solution. Plants’ apoplastic pH (the pH of the plant’s cellular interior) is about 5.5 and their cytoplasm pH is between 7.2 and 7.4. This indicates that the soil pH can increase the availability of nutrient-rich minerals for growth. In addition, a pH gradient across the plasma membrane of a plant’s root is essential for proper nutrient uptake.
Impact of soil water on nutrient uptake by plants
Soil structure is a big factor in nutrient delivery to plants. The root system can be restricted in movement toward nutrient and water sources by compaction. Overall soil nutrient concentration also affects movement of nutrients from the soil to the plant. The higher the concentration of nutrients in the soil, the greater the chance that they will reach the plant roots. In order to improve the uptake of nutrients, proper soil monitoring is necessary.
Drought reduced the concentrations of N and P in all three plant species. Drought decreased P and N uptake by plants relative to those grown in well-watered control plots. Consequently, the effects of drought on plant nutrition were likely due to a decrease in root water uptake and decreased nutrient mobility in the soil. In contrast, drought reduced nutrient uptake in plants from the upper layers, which often contain higher nutrient concentrations.