Last updated: June 17, 2021

What Does Micronutrient Mean?

A micronutrient is one of seven essential secondary nutrients that plants require to maintain productive growth.

Micronutrients include chlorine (Cl), molybdenum (Mo), copper (Cu), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn), zinc (Zn), and boron (B). Plants require all of these nutrients in small amounts, however, they are less essential than macronutrients, or primary nutrients, nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K).


Maximum Yield Explains Micronutrient

It's rare for plants in their seedling and propagation stages to be deficient in any of the elements listed above. This is because most plant nutrients purchased from the store contain trace amounts of micronutrients, or else they are already found in the soil in which your plants are growing.

To determine whether plants actually require micronutrients, growers may first try to determine if the growth deficiency is related to other issues such as insects, droughts, or salinity. In several cases, soil samples are also taken for analysis. If the plants are found to lack any of the seven micronutrients, they are administered at small doses. This can be done either through an all-purpose fertilizer, or a tailored nutrient recipe you find or buy. Some growers may decide to add organic inputs like kelp, molasses, bat guano, or vermicompost (worm castings) to their plants, as these ingredients are all rich in micronutrients.

One particular micronutrient that is extremely important for plant growth is boron. Boron directly affects germination, pollen formation, and flower retention. Plants that are low in boron can display hollow fruits and stems as well as barren ears.

Iron is another micronutrient essential to healthy plant growth. This nutrient actively encourages the production of chlorophyll and prevents the leaf discoloration that is commonly found in dying plants.


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