Did you know that your plants need Magnesium as much as you do? Magnesium, a vital nutrient in the human body which is responsible for over 30 different enzymic reactions, bone growth, and cardiovascular function, is also an invaluable part of a plant’s biology.
Magnesium is vital to the process of photosynthesis because it forms the central atom of chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is what makes a leaf appear green. Because of this, without sufficient amounts of magnesium, plants begin to degrade the chlorophyll in old leaves. This leads to magnesium deficiency, or chlorosis, in plants. Yellowing between leaf veins is a sure sign of chlorosis in a plant. Magnesium deficiency leads to low amounts of photosynthetic and enzymatic activity within a plant, leading to smaller growth and low fruit bearing.
There are three fractions of magnesium in the soil. Magnesium in the soil solution, Exchangeable Magnesium, and Non-Exchangeable Magnesium. Magnesium in soil solution is at an equal balance with exchangeable magnesium and is available to plants. Exchangeable Magnesium is made up by organic matter and clay particles, this is most readily available to the plant. Then there is non-exchangeable magnesium, which consists of magnesium that is a constituent of primary minerals in the soil. Break down the process of minerals in soils is slow, meaning this is too little for a plant to use for photosynthesis.
Plants process magnesium in its ionic form Mg+2, which is magnesium dissolved in soil. Magnesium amounts that a plant takes up depend on its concentration in the soil, and the capacity of the soil being able to replenish these magnesium soil levels.
Competing elements, like potassium and calcium, as well as low soil pH, low temperatures, and dry soil conditions, reduce magnesium availability. With these conditions, magnesium deficiency is far more likely in a plant.
To fix magnesium deficiencies in plants using organic matter as compost can help with the problem. However, using magnesium salts such as Magnesium Chloride mixed with water shows the best results in conjunction with composting. This will also raise the magnesium content in your fruits and vegetables that you grow, and in turn raising your own vital magnesium levels. Simply adding 25 grams of Magnesium Chloride to one liter of water will suffice when watering your plants.
This process can help not only your plants but yourself become healthier via the Miracle Mineral; Magnesium.