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Posted By: Plant Magic

Importance of Potassium Nutrition in Plants

Hydroponic nutrients are vital for plants to develop healthily and to effectively conduct their processes. As a primary nutrient needed by plants, potassium (K) is required for all living cells to work properly. A PK booster, such as the Platinum - Premium PK 9-18, is a great way of addressing potassium needs in plants.

From growing tomato plants or any other crops, all plants require an adequate source of potassium so they can regulate their growth and thrive.



Potassium has a complex role in photosynthesis, helping to maintain a proper photosynthesis rate. This nutrient help to activate enzymes and to produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP). When plants combine water and CO2 to form sugars, ATP is the original high-energy product, which is then used as energy source for other chemical reactions.

All plant processes that depend on ATP slow down, which increases plant respiration and slows down plant development and growth.


Transportation of Water and Nutrients

Should there be reduced amounts of potassium available to plants, the translocation of magnesium, phosphates, calcium, amino acids, and nitrates is also reduced. Potassium’s role in the transportation of nutrients and water often works in conjunction with plant growth hormones and enzymes.

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Enzyme Activation

Serving as catalysts for a variety of chemical reaction, enzymes are required to bring together molecules to allow these reactions to occur. Potassium is needed to ‘activate’ approximately 60 different enzymes that are essential for plant growth. This nutrient changes enzyme molecules’ physical shape so that the right chemically active sites are exposed for reaction.

Additionally, potassium also helps plants to keep a stable pH level between 7 and 8 for enzyme reactions, neutralising organic anions and other compounds. The rate of reactions within plants is controlled by the rate in which potassium enters the cells.


Protein and Starch Synthesis

Necessary for all steps in protein synthesis, potassium is essential to produce enzymes and proteins to regulate growth processes. A potassium deficiency results in proteins not being synthesised and in nitrate, amides, and amino acids to accumulate.

Potassium activates the enzyme responsible for starch, which is vital for appropriate photosynthetic activity, sugar formation, and to prevent nitrogen compounds from accumulating.


Sugar Transportation

All sugars that are produced during photosynthesis need to be transported to other areas of the plant for both storage and utilisation. As plants’ transport system rely on ATP for energy, a reduced amount of potassium will result in slow normal development of the energy storage organs. Having a proper potassium supply available ensures that plants can keep their transportation systems and processes working correctly.

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Symptoms of Potassium Deficiency

A potassium deficiency can be tricky to distinguish from a phosphorus or nitrogen at first glance. All of these deficiencies can induce both yellowing leaves and their subsequent death, from the lower plant leaves and progressing upward.

  • Weakness to drought and temperature changes. A potassium deficiency results in poor water circulation, which makes plants extremely susceptible to droughts and temperature changes.
  • Chlorosis. When chlorosis occurs, leaves become scorched with yellowing at the ends. Affected leaves are typically lower and middle leaves.
  • Defoliation. When unnoticed, a potassium deficiency causes plants to lose their leaves much sooner than expected. Should the potassium deficiency happen alongside high temperatures or a drought, the process of defoliation can be even faster, with plants’ leaves becoming yellow and brown before falling.
  • Stunted growth. As a vital nutrient for plant growth, affected plants will present slower or stunted growth. A bloom booster is typically a great way to ensure plants can absorb potassium better, increasing both fruiting and flowering without issues.

Making sure that your plants have the needed nutrients throughout their lives will ensure healthier and sturdier crops. Should you wish to know more about our products, make sure to contact us on 01695 554 080 - we’re always happy to help you achieve the best possible yields.

Our Blog: Hydroponic Tips & Tricks

Whether you are an expert who already has a thriving crop of healthy plants, or you are trying to grow your very first hydroponic yield, we can help you to grow the strong and healthy crops you have always wanted.

Here at Plant Magic Plus, our team of gardening experts work very hard behind the scenes to provide you with the high quality nutrients, additives and growing media that will help you to get the most out of your growing plants.

But we understand that successful horticulture is about more than just having good quality chemicals, nutrients or fetilisers, that's why we have written this blog to provide you with the insights, tips and techniques you will need to give your garden that extra magic touch.

From helpful advice about watering your plants in soil and a guide to magnesium nutrients, to top tips about growing hydroponic vegetables and a comprehensive overview of microbes, we’ve got everything covered.


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