MicroKote® is a micronutrient supplement for container-grown plants designed to improve root development and increase efficiency of micronutrient intake. MicroKote can be used at any stage of plant production from seedlings to large trees.

Improving micronutrient nutrition and root development

MicroKote® is designed to improve nutrition and root development of plants grown in containers. MicroKote® contains calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese and zinc bound in a latex coating to provide delayed release of the nutrients when the roots reach the sides of the container. Typically, container-grown plants develop circled and matted roots, a condition known as “root bound”. Once transplanted, this can lead to poor root regrowth into the surrounding soil unless the root bound condition is corrected by mechanical root pruning prior to transplanting. Unfortunately, root-pruning causes transplant shock; where up to 80% of the root system can be damaged resulting in slower growth and sometimes death. MicroKote promotes the development of a fibrous root system, which requires little to no mechanical root pruning at transplanting. Other benefits such as improved growth in height, branches, and caliper and flower number due to improved nutrition and fibrous root development can occur. To fully achieve these benefits, the product must be properly applied and used at key stages of nursery production.

Building a better root system to support better growth

Published information on using coatings that contain copper to improve root development has generally focused on using products at one stage of nursery production. As a stand-alone product, MicroKote® will not always improve plant growth unless used in at least one shifting or transplanting step. When plants grown in MicroKote®-treated containers are transplanted to larger containers, or lined out in the field, the improved root structure supports quicker root regeneration, which ultimately supports better growth. This improved root regeneration results from building a more fibrous root system with more intact root tips that have a higher regeneration potential. MicroKote® prevents the “cage root” condition where roots are only present on the outside of the root ball. Instead, the roots explore and utilize all the available potting media. An improvement in root distribution can lead to an improvement in the nutrient status and health of the plant which will support quicker growth when upcanned or transplanted.