healthy soil

Terms like “chelated minerals” are often used without much of a definition. So, why is chelation important, how does it work and are all chelated minerals the same?

Chelation increases the availability of nutrients to plants. In soil, chelated minerals are absorbed more rapidly by both plant roots and leaves, and this faster nutrient transfer results in accelerated growth, higher Brix levels and higher yield.

Historically, healthy soil has been rich in organic matter and humus, which resulted in natural chelation. Today, natural and synthetic chelates are routinely added to fertilisers. We’ll talk more about that in a minute, but let’s first look at 6 ways chelates can impact your soil.

  1. Chelators in soil increase the solubility, and thus availability of certain metal micronutrients to plants. For example, in soil with high pH levels, chelating agents will bind insoluble iron, converting it into a water soluble form that is available for plant uptake.

  2. Likewise, chelating agents prevent chemical reactions that turn some nutrients into insoluble compounds that are unavailable to plants.

  3. Chelates can reduce the toxicity of some metal ions to plants by returning their concentration to normal beneficial levels.

  4. Chelates prevent loss of nutrients through leaching, or wash out.

  5. Chelation increases the mobility of nutrients in soil.  This increased mobility enhances the uptake of nutrients by plants.

  6. Chelating agents reduce the growth of plant pathogens by reducing available iron.

Sounds like a great case for chelates, right? Yes, but many of the popular chelating agents currently used in agriculture are inefficient — meaning a large amount of chelating agent is needed to chelate a low percentage of metal ions in the soil. The expense can be huge for farm-scale application.

Converte is different. Converte is built on the work of David Menne, a brilliant chemist who created a completely different chelating system based on natural polysaccharides. Ironically, his work wasn’t intended for agriculture, but a chance discovery led to years of experimentation and refinement that resulted in a major breakthrough in chelation efficiency called the Shuttle System.

In conventional chelation chemistry, agents carry trace elements through the outer cell walls into the plant. Using the Shuttle System, the chelator never actually enters the plant, enabling it to transport nutrients to the plant then return to repeat the process. The net effect is a greatly enhanced uptake of the applied nutrients and greater efficiency of the chelating agents.

Chelating agents are an important step in restoring soil health.

Learn more about Converte Chelating Minerals and our complete nutrition system.