Chelating Agent


Definition - What does Chelating Agent mean?

In gardening, chelating agents refer to compounds that cling to micronutrients, making them more efficient while also boosting their absorption in plant cells. Some micronutrients such as calcium, sulfur, and iron cannot be properly absorbed by the plant’s pores, resulting in nutrient deficiency. Chelating agents are used to allow the nutrients to seep into the pores to reach the plant’s tissues.

MaximumYield explains Chelating Agent

The most popular types of chelating agents used in gardening include:

  • Ethylenediaminedihydroxy-phenylaceticacid (EDDHA)
  • Diethylenetriaminepentaacetate (DTPA)
  • Ethylenediaminetetraacetate (EDTA)

EDTA is widely used since it has far broader pH stability. It is also more affordable than other chelating agents. This substance is ideal for hydroponics, provided that the pH level of the water is properly adjusted before adding the nutrients. In some cases, chelating agents can also be used to reduce the toxicity caused by metal ions. These substances have been known to prevent the precipitation of compounds that can be damaging to plants.


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