Mineral Nutrition – Solutions
1. ‘All elements that are present in a plant need not be essential
for its survival’. Comment.
A plant requires a set of nutrients for its growth and development, and for carrying out the metabolic activities. Some of these nutrients are essential. In their absence, normal functioning is impaired, leading to abnormal growth, and, eventually, in the plant’s death. Carbon, nitrogen etc, belong to the category of essential nutrients. These are called macronutrients. Some elements affect the metabolic pathway and are required in very small quantities. These are micronutrients. Mn, Mo, etc. belong to this category. However, certain elements accumulate in plants although they are not essential. For example, plants growing near nuclear test sites take up radioactive strontium into their bodied. Hence, all elements present in the body of a plant are not essential for its survival.