THE B TO Z OF PLANT NUTRITION: BORON

Have you seen these funky cavities in brocolli and carrots? When I first noticed such hollow stems, I was surprised to learn that they were not the work of an artistic worm, but signs of a deficiency in a mineral called boron.

Despite its name, poor boron deserves our respect and attention. You may already be using boron in the form of borax, the cleaning detergent, or boron supplements for bone health.

In plants, boron controls flowering, pollination, fruit-to-flower ratio, and the transfer of sugars from leaves to roots to feed beneficial soil microbes. Besides hollow stems, misshapen fruit, die-back of growing tips, flower and fruit drop, and poor seed set are all clues of boron deficiency. Tip: It’s helpful to supply boron to plants immediately before flowering to increase flowers and fruits.

In plants, animals and humans, boron improves the uptake of the all-important calcium. Without boron, calcium cannot be properly absorbed into our bones, hence boron deficiency is strongly linked to osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. It is striking that boron deficiency shows up in the same way in plants, animals and people – as hollow stems/bones.

If boron is not in the food that we eat, it doesn’t get into our bodies. Feed your edible plants well to feed your bodies well. Boron is in Diglings LUSH liquid nutrition. Giving LUSH to your plants is an insurance that your plants get all the essential minerals that they need for healthy growth and reproduction.

Next, we will look at the all-important calcium.

Published by Diglings

Tropical urban food gardener, designer and writer.

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