What is Humic Acid and what does it do?

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If you've been exposed to the lawn, soil or agriculture world then you've surely heard of Humic Acid and the benefits of using it.  Some of the most popular lawncare products made today, start with this material.

What is it and where does it come from?  Humic and Fulvic acids come from reacting Leonardite (an ancient form of organic matter that has not yet turned into coal) in a bath of an alkaline solution.  This results in the extraction of the molecular chains that are known as Humic and Fulvic acids. 

Let's take a look at a few of the benefits of their uses.

  • Has a high CEC (Cation {cat-ion} Exchange Capacity), what this means is that Anions (negatively charged ions) attach themselves to the Cations (positively charged ions) of what are typically metal ions, that include Iron, Potassium, Hydrogen, Ammonium, Calcium and Magnesium.  This process is referred to as, Chelation.
  • Is a great CHEALATOR(Kee-lay-tor).  Nutrients can be locked up in the soil by certain reactions or scenarios.  One of these would be the pH of the soil being out of range (soil test results) and the other can be that the nutrients have bound with other nutrients due to their ionic charge.  In either case, the plant cannot absorb the nutrient unless they have gone through Chelation.
  • Increases photosynthesis
  • Increases nutrient uptake
  • Improves soil structure and holding capacity
  • Stimulates root growth and improves cell division
  • Promotes good bacteria and fungi
  • It gets the microbiology revved up

All in all, Humic and Fulvic make wonderful additions to your plain fertility plan and can help in many ways.  It's also important to state that these acids do not contain any nutrition by themselves.   Let's take a look at some of my favorite products that contain these biostimulants.  Remember to follow the label, you won't hurt anything by over applying Humic alone but you would be wasting it.

  1. N-Ext Humic12, RGS, Soil Activator Pack and most of their fertilizers.
  2. Ecologel products and fertilizers

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