Definition - What does nutrient availability mean?
Nutrient availability, as the name suggests, is the available source of nutrients for plant growth. This is evaluated on the basis of the number of elements in the soil that can be easily absorbed through the roots of the plants that can also serve as essential nutrients to growing plants. Nutrient availability is often one of the many factors that are considered by the modern agriculture industry in determining the growth rate of a plant.
MaximumYield explains nutrient availability
Nutrient availability is an integral component in determining the growth rate of plants. Agricultural studies have shown that the growth rate of plants is directly proportional to the availability of nutrients. So, when the growth rate of plants increases the indicators of nutrient availability also increases. As a result, understanding the soil nutrient availability also helps predict the yield of plants.
Another concept that closely overlaps with nutrient availability is soil productivity. Soil productivity and nutrient availability are also closely interrelated but they have different functions in plant growth. While a high quantity of nutrients in the soil is good for the plant, the availability of these nutrients is not the only factor contributing to plant growth. Several factors such as soil temperature, soil physical conditions, moisture content etc. can alter plant growth and yield. Thus, an abundance of nutrients in the soil does not necessarily equal high soil productivity and a lack of it does not necessarily alter growth.