While we’re not specifically in the Ag business, let’s be real – it’s all around us. We’re all surrounded by the Ag business. You might not work in Ag but your neighbors do. The fields around us, the produce stands, the Farmer’s Market… Ag is all around us!
Ag is us.
We recently read a story that caught our attention. It was titled
“Be More Than Oh-K: How To Manage Your Field’s Potassium Levels“
It was a scientific article published in a Ag specific website.
If you remember your High School Chem class, you probably remember that the symbol for potassium is the letter K. Get it? Maybe that’s why we clicked to read, we do like our puns around here. It’s also always good to learn new things.
The article was absolutely written for the Farming Professional but we came away with some pretty cool things we didn’t know.
Potassium is Vital to Corn
Even though K is mobile in plants and helps deliver water and other nutrients throughout the plant, it is immobile in soil. This means it needs to be where the roots can reach it.
In laymans terms they described treating the soil’s supply of potassium like a gas tank.
“If you let it get all the way down to empty, it costs you a lot to fill it back up,” he says. “Whereas, if you fill that gas tank somewhere between half full and full, you have that nice even supply of fuel. If I can start a plant off with a good rich supply of K, it’s going to help it get through stressful times during the season.”
In botanical terms, if the potassium level is too low, the stomata don’t close. Excess water then escapes from the open stoma.
What the heck is a Stomata?
We couldn’t remember either. Wasn’t it something about how flowers reproduce? Nope! Are you ready?
They are small pores known as stomata, enclosed by a pair of guard cells, and are present on the surfaces of leaves and stems. Their function is to regulate the exchange of gases, particularly water vapor and CO2, between the interior of the leaf and the atmosphere.
When we hear things like plants giving off oxygen – that’s due to these pores! Stomata for the win!
Next time you see rows of corn with yellowing leaves, now you can be the Ag expert and tell your friends all about the lower levels of K in the soil and how that is keeping the Stomata open, not allowing them to fully close and well, then we all know what happens next, right?
If you want to be better than Oh-K, you can go into how Potassium, also known as K, is a positively pun-tastic element with a plethora of properties that pack a powerful punch. The prime player in the periodic table, K is present in plenty of produce, from plump potatoes to perfectly ripe pears. Plants just can’t get enough of its primary power, as it plays a pivotal part in promoting growth, photosynthesis, and protein production. Plus, its positively charged ions are paramount for pumping up our hearts and keeping our nerves firing properly. So, whether you’re a professional ping-pong player or a passionate pun aficionado, potassium is the perfect partner for all your P-related pursuits!