Calcium nitrate is a fully water soluble fertilizer, that is a highly efficient source of available calcium and nitrogen for plants under all growth conditions. It is a free flowing, prilled material which dissolves quickly in water without any residues. Suited for application through all fertigation and foliar application systems – drip systems, low volume sprinklers, center pivots, and spray units. As calcium is not mobile in the plant, it has to be continuously supplied throughout the growing season to keep adequate levels in the plant tissues and to ensure proper development. The nitrate nitrogen is readily absorbed by the plant and improves the efficiency of calcium uptake.
This fertilizer is commonly used in greenhouse cultivation, hydroponics, and crops that require additional calcium, such as tomatoes, peppers, and apples. It helps prevent calcium deficiencies in plants, leading to disorders like blossom end rot in tomatoes or tip burn in lettuce.
Benefits of using Calcium Nitrate
- Calcium is the trucker of all nutrients in plants. Without calcium, the plants cannot make use of other nutrients. Other nutrients like nitrogen, potassium, magnesium and boron etc. cannot be efficiently transported to all the parts of the plants without adequate calcium. This is why calcium is very important in plants.
- Calcium is known for its ability to expand the pores in the soil. This improves soil aeration and makes the soil inconvenient for some harmful pests and microbes. When soil aeration is improved, the roots of plants can expand rapidly; this can improve the yield of crops.
- Calcium improves the cell walls of plants. When the cell walls of plants are improved, the incidences of pests and diseases are also reduced. With enough calcium, plant cells become more turgid and resilient to stress and other adverse conditions. Pests are known to avoid plants that are turgid.
- Calcium improves the quality and look of plants and fruits. Adequate calcium makes fruits and leaves look very appealing, it also improves the shelf lives of fruits and leaves. Crops with low levels of calcium often produce fruits with a poor shelf life and look.
- Calcium nitrate improves the assimilation of silica in plants. This can significantly improve crop yield.
How to use Calcium Nitrate
- Calcium nitrate fertilizer can be used through base dressing and side dressing. That is, the fertilizer is placed beside each plant. The fertilizer can also be buried some few centimeters away from the plant. During ploughing and harrowing, calcium nitrate can be used through base and top dressing.
- Calcium nitrate fertilizer can also be applied to crops at their root zone through fertigation. Fertigation is done through the use of venture injector and dosing pump.
- Calcium nitrate fertilizer can also be foliar sprayed on the leaves and stems of plants. The concentration of calcium nitrate in water during foliar application should not exceed 2%.
Foliar application of calcium nitrate
- Calcium nitrate can be applied through foliar application. Foliar application of fertilizers is the spraying of fertilizer solutions on the leaves and stems of plants.
- Foliar application is done through the use of knapsack sprayers, boom sprayers or irrigation sprinklers.
- To apply calcium fertilizer through foliar means, the calcium nitrate solution should be 0.5% – 2% concentration in water. If the concentration is too high, the leaves of the plants can be burned.
- Deficiency of calcium in plants can be quickly remedied through the foliar application of fertilizers.
- To apply calcium nitrate through a knapsack sprayer, you need to half fill the sprayer with water, add calcium nitrate, mix thoroughly, fill up the sprayer and mix thoroughly again. This ensures that the whole fertilizer dissolves in the water. Alternatively, you can mix the calcium nitrate with water in a drum or bowl, then, pour the solution into the knapsack sprayer.