GROW: CHELATED MINERALS AND NUTRITIONFeatured, Gardening Tips — By NUG Magazine on March 15, 2011 at 11:47 am
By: The SD OG Grower
FOR PLANTS AND HUMANS ALIKE!
Everyone always wants to know what the best nutrients are, or what is the one product that will give me that magical harvest and yield? Many people say that all nutrients are the same and you can just use anything like Miracle Grow or some powdered 20-20-20 made of nitrates and other nonâ€“chelated elements or minerals. Itâ€™s just not true! Chelated minerals or elements are much more effective and useful to the plant or body. They actually enhance and balance out the ecosystem in the root zone; and itâ€™s what they do naturally to each other that creates better uptake in the plant, better pH balance and stabilization, and a healthier immune system. Itâ€™s kind of like drinking your favorite beer. A Natural Ice is not the same thing as a Heineken or Samuel Adams. Sure, theyâ€™re both beer and will get you buzzed, but both will have different effects on the body, and everything from the buzz to the hangover in the morning is different between the two. Itâ€™s simple; itâ€™s the quality and type of minerals used. The natural chelation or fermentation process they go through greatly affects the outcome, final value, and quality of the end product, whether itâ€™s your plant, you yourself, or brewing and making beer. The quality of the ingredients, where they were derived from and how they were processed, determines how functional and active they will be once theyâ€™re put into the nutrient water to create a nutrient solution.
Iâ€™m going to lightly touch on a couple of subjects that go way deeper than Iâ€™m going to try and explain. Letâ€™s start with pH. We all know how greatly pH can effect and make or break a crop. pH stands for potential hydrogen, and we use the familiar scale from 0-14.0 pH with 7.0 being neutral pH. pH is actually the measurement of hydrogen and hydroxide ions. When a nutrient solution is pH 7.0 or less, then it has more hydrogen ions than hydroxide ions. And when a nutrient solution is pH 7.0 (also known as alkaline) or higher, then it has more hydroxide ions than hydrogen ions in it. The same goes for your growing medium; if there is more of one or the other, it affects the pH and determines if itâ€™s high or low, which changes the pH value and can greatly affect the plant.
These two hydrogen and hydroxide ions are also present in all of our elements or minerals we use to grow our plants with, and most of which our human bodies use as well in the same exact way! We classify these minerals into two different distinct groups. The first group of elements is called cations, and they contain more hydrogen ions. This group called cations includes some of our macro and micro elements such as urea, ammonium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron zinc, manganese copper and cobalt. The second group of elements is called anions, and they contain more hydroxide ions. And some of the elements that are anions are nitrates, phosphates, sulfates, carbonates and bicarbonates.
I know youâ€™re asking yourself what in the world does this have to do with me? Actually, everything! Your water, nutrients, and growing medium form and create a natural and powerful circle that when kept in balance with each other is the real kept secret to a healthy plant and a huge tasty harvest, as well as a strong and healthy body!
By definition, an element is â€œa substance consisting of atoms, which all have the same number of protons or the same atomic number.â€ There are about 116 elements known to man and they are all listed on the Periodic Table (webelements.com), but most nutrient formulas only include about 12-17 of these different elements.
All elements have a â€œchargeâ€ to them, either positive or negative. This charge is not always active or turned on per say when the element or mineral is in its single state form, or by itself. Many organic minerals or elements are found together in nature and are called â€œcompoundsâ€ or chelated minerals, which consist of two or more minerals or elements compounded together. This normally happens by some geological event like a volcano erupting tons of nutrient rich minerals up out of the earth with all of the silt landing in a fresh water lake, or natural mineral deposits that are mined out of the earth. Over time, like a fermenting brew, it compounds the minerals into layers, combining and then mixing them together as one â€“ many times seen in layers. This can be called or referred to as raw chelated minerals as they are charged and active when compounded with other nutrients creating the chelation process.
However, this process of chelation goes a bit deeper. A quick summary would be that without certain elements or minerals, other elements and minerals may be present, but will not be active! Adding a product like IGS Elements trace minerals (which will be available for market soon) with over 78 known elements mostly in minute amounts, can dramatically increase and improve your garden and yields. As the earth compounds the minerals, a humic layer covers them and in a sense is fermenting or chelating these minerals together, making it an amazing chelated trace mineral.
Everything in life needs to have balance, and that includes the nutrients for your plants, nutrients or food for your body, and the water and minerals that go with those as well. Iâ€™ll talk in the next issue about water quality, but you should all be using a Reverse Osmosis machine and a De Chlor Filter for the water you use to feed your plants. The problem with stripping out all the bad stuff in your water is that you also end up stripping out all the good minerals too. So, we need to replenish them with some trace minerals like IGS Elements. â€“Itâ€™s cheap and a little goes a long way. I also like to use it to blend with my coco medium before I even plant. It helps make the minerals available right away at planting, but it also balances out the microbial ecosystem in the medium. By having the right balance in the medium, the pH stays balanced as the right amount of cations and anions are present in a well-balanced nutrient mix. Not all nutrient companies use chelated nutrients, in fact, very few do. A simple way to activate any nutrient and charge your garden is to add the right chelated trace minerals such as IGS Elements.
Some of the benefits of using chelated trace minerals include helping beneficial and microbial organisms by sustaining and enhancing their natural â€œMicrobial Ecosystemâ€, and better uptake of nutrients, especially nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium (N-P-K). IGS Elements is basically a fine silt mineral clay, and clay having the highest retention rate of energy makes it one of the best additives for your garden, creating the best balanced environment in the root zone as well as making the absorption rate of nutrients by the plants much higher and much more efficient. This increases the availability of nutrients to the plant, prevents nutrients from leaching out of the plant, increases the mobility of plant nutrients within the plant, prevents mineral nutrients from locking up and becoming insoluble, suppresses plant pathogen growth, and when done properly, it helps stabilize and balance out the pH.
But remember, many of these elements or minerals are only used in trace amounts, many under 1/1000 of mg. Generally, these are called trace minerals, which are uncommon minerals that all organisms need in minute quantities in order to trigger the production of enzymes and hormones for growth, reproduction, and healthy maintenance for the plant, animal, or human body.
What does this mean to your garden? Well, if most nutrient companies are not using chelated elements for their nutrients, or youâ€™re not using a chelated product like IGS Elements, then you are definitely not getting the most out of your plants and are being robbed of a much larger, sweeter, and healthier harvest! Your plants will thank you for it. The same IGS Elements is sold in a purer pharmaceutical form in capsules for the human body, and itâ€™s called 76 Minerals. IGS Hydro in Pacific Beach has them both, and the capsules of the minerals for your body really work as well; just like with the plants, itâ€™s the same process, relation and reactions!
Chelated trace minerals are the missing ingredient in life! Many believe itâ€™s the reason why 3rd world countries donâ€™t have cancer; itâ€™s due to the minerals they get from eating whole foods with proper nutrition that comes straight out of the ground.Â The soils in our backyards and farmlands are far past depleted. Adding chelated trace minerals is one of the only ways to bring the soilâ€™s natural ecosystem back to life again. Remember, the same goes for our bodies; about 90% of us are nutrient deficient! That means that 90% of us are not getting the proper nutrition into our bodies, which is mainly due to the depletion and lack of chelated trace minerals in our diets. Try it for yourself, and also give it to your plants. Donâ€™t you both deserve to be the healthiest and most productive that you can be? Itâ€™s a secret that most nutrient companies and our government donâ€™t want you to know about because they wouldnâ€™t be able to sell you as many other products and supplements to fix all those problems. This goes for the health of your plant and the health of your body because both will thank you once you have tried it!