Trace Elements

Trace elements are nutrients that are needed in only very small amounts for plant and/or animal growth and health. There are six trace elements needed for plant growth - boron, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum and zinc. A further three - cobalt, selenium and iodine - are also needed to control animal health problems.

Why use trace elements?

Trace element deficiencies in soil can have a serious impact on the agronomic potential of land. In New Zealand in particular, lack of selenium, iodine and cobalt in the past caused severe animal health issues and greatly restricted the earning potential of farms.

The availability of trace elements is determined by the soil parent material, the age of the soil, the soil pH and the length of time that the land has been intensively farmed. Where herbage analysis or animal testing indicates that trace elements are deficient, remedial action needs to be taken. 

The best course of action - animal treatment or trace element application to pasture - needs to be discussed with your vet and Ballance Nutrient Specialist. Care needs to be taken with trace element applications as the margins between sufficiency levels and toxic levels of trace element can be very narrow.

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