All plants must have sixteen elements for normal growth and health. These elements can be divided in three categories: Major, Minor and Trace  elements. These all must be dissolved in an ionized water solution to enter the plants metabolism. This simply means  essential-elements-for-plant-growththey will have a negative charge (missing an electron) or a possessive charge (having an extra electron). The following 3 elements are normally not listed as part of the plants essentials but as you can imagine they are of great importance.

 These three elements are obtained from the ambient surroundings.

  • Oxygen O
  • Carbon C
  • Hydrogen H

Major Elements

The Majors are used in major quantities by the plants. They are normally referred to as NPK.

Nitrogen (N): central for growth, and is the essential element in protein production and the green colored  chlorophyll. Nitrogen, feeds the bacterial organisms.  Refer to the Nitrogen Cycle for further details.

Phosphorous (P): Builds roots and is very important for transplanting success, flowering, ripening of fruits, photosynthesis, breathing of plant and general growth. It is normally applied in larger amounts in the flowering stage of the plants. Many times Calcium phosphate is used for the “change-over” period of the plant. This is when the plant is just starting the change from pure growth to initiating it’s buds.

Potassium (K): Travels in whole plant. Transports the sugars, fiber for strength, resistance to diseases and insects and also contributes to starting the flowering.

Minor Elements

Calcium (Ca): is the major ingredient in cell walls and binds the cells together. It is found on the apexes of roots and is important for flowering.

Magnesium (Mg): Central element of chlorophyll production. Contributes to maturation and sprouting of seeds. Helps plant absorb Phosphorous, Sulfur and Nitrogen. Mg also helps builds the cell wall.

Sulfur (S): Found in many proteins, enzymes and vitamins. Helps transport Mg, K and Ca. It is also important in producing chlorophyll.

Trace Elements

Iron (Fe): important for amino acids, enzymes, chlorophyll syntheses.
Boron (B): important for water retention and fruit growth
Manganes (Mn): important for seed sprouting, hastens maturity, photosynthesis and chlorophyll synthesis, nitrogen metabolism and protein formation.
Molybdenum (Mo): Very necessary and important for the plants and the micro organisms to absorb nitrogen. It is also necessary for the formation of proteins whose main composition is Nitrogen.
Chlorine (Cl): stimulates photosynthesis.
Copper (Cu): activates several enzymes. Also serves for making chlorophylle.
Zinc (Zn): has an important role in making enzymes, proteins and plant growth hormones.