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Monday, October 7, 2013

Will Green Light Chelate Cure Iron Chlorosis in Highly Alkaline Soils

Q. I used a product called Green Light. It contains chelated iron, copper and zinc for correcting plants that are yellow. Is this similar to the chelate you talk about for our soils?
A. I know the Green Light chelate product and it will not be very effective in our tap water which is alkaline or our well water. It will also not work in most of our soils because they are also too alkaline.

This product will work if you adjust the water with some acid and use it as a spray on the leaves of the plant. If you have a gallon of water you can put a small amount of vinegar or pool acid used to adjust alkalinity of pool water.

Test the water with some pool pH strips or a kit if you are using pool acid. If you are using vinegar, two or three tablespoons of vinegar in a gallon of water should be enough. After adding the acid and mixing the water you can add chelates to the spray solution.

Follow the label directions and then add two more things to your mix. First, add a small amount of liquid fertilizer or a powdered fertilizer that dissolves in the water. Secondly, add about a teaspoon of liquid detergent to the finished spray mix.

Make sure everything is dissolved and thoroughly mixed. This spray solution must be used very soon after it is prepared. Use it all up and don't save any of it. It will probably not last. Use this mixture any time temperatures are cool.

Only spray long enough until you begin seeing this liquid spray run off of the leaf surface. Spray both sides of the leaves; once over the tops of the leaves and a second time with the spray pointing up so the undersides of the leaves are sprayed as well.

The addition of a liquid detergent to the mix will help move the solution inside the leaf. The small amount of fertilizer will make the chelate more effective. If leaves have already become quite yellow, spray them once every few days for about four or five applications.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Bob,

    I always enjoy reading your articles to see if they mesh with the info I am giving the public. In most cases we are in lock step. There is an exception this time. Reference your question: "I used a product called Green Light".

    I believe the questioner is referring to Green Light "Iron and Soil Acidifier". If this is so, this concentrated product contains considerable liquid sulfur that makes the chelated ingredients readily available to plants, even in highly alkaline soils. It was our biggest seller and worked wonders with gardenias, camellias, magnolias and other acid using plants. Unfortunately,it is no longer being manufactured. Scotts fertilizer Company bought out Green Light and discontinued nearly all of their products including this one. Local vs national needs, I suppose. They wouldn't say when pressed. I suspect eliminating competition was a major reason.

    While Iron and Soil Acidifier could undoubtedly be used as a foliar spray, the label leaned on using it as a drench.

    Best Regards,

    Dr. Q from Star Nursery