Why Do Plants Need To Control The Loss Of Water

If you’re curious about why do plants need to control the loss of water, the simplest explanation is that water is essential for photosynthesis and survival in challenging conditions. Remember that water is a limiting factor for photosynthesis, and it’s one of the things you should ensure to provide for the plants you grow. If you cultivate any plant species, it’s knowledge in these areas that you must understand to avoid drawbacks. 

Below is an easy-to-understand explanation of the importance of this mechanism and how the plants actually do it. You can use the information when growing and maintaining your plants properly. Lastly, don’t forget to provide the ideal growing conditions and environment for your plants using structures like greenhouses or covers in the garden.

 

Why Do Plants Need To Control The Loss Of Water

Why Do Plants Need To Control The Loss Of Water And How Is This Done?

Remember that temperature and water are influential factors for the plants to conduct photosynthesis. Therefore, plants can struggle under conditions that limit these areas, so they have to adapt and conserve water. This article will discuss two ways in how plants control the loss of water shortly. 

But why do plants need to control the loss of water? Over time, different plant species such as cacti have specifically evolved to improve water retention. Besides the fact that water is a limiting factor of photosynthesis, the control of loss of water offers benefits such as cooling, better nutrient absorption, and support on the structure as the plant transpires.

By definition, transpiration refers to the loss of water in plants via water vapor. This is a beneficial process as plants need it for evaporative cooling, acquiring soil nutrients, gas exchange, and water uptake. However, plants need to control the loss of water because it is vital for driving biochemical processes. 

 

If water is important for plants, why do plants need to lose it for various processes?

Overall, plants depend on water for growth and productivity. Plants must always find the balance between photosynthesis and transpiration and this is only possible by controlling the loss of water. Both processes are vital to plants, but there are risks that they regularly undergo, especially during challenging conditions. 

 

How Plants Control The Loss Of Water

Before this article discusses the two methods of controlling water loss, it’s worth noting the factors that affect the transpiration rate. They include light, soil water, temperature, humidity, and wind. Controlling these environmental factors is something you should note to help prevent water loss on your plants. 

 

Method #1. Through the leaves

Plants can reduce transpiration, which controls water loss using the hairs and coatings on their leaves. You’ll notice the waxy coatings on the leaves that give off a gray cast on the surface, but some plants also have reflective white hairs instead. These coatings slow the movement of air and reduce the plant’s temperature to conserve water. 

Besides having coatings on the leaf surface, some plants have also adapted to have smaller leaves. Remember that having a smaller leaf surface area will also mean fewer stomata. And stomata is the part of the leaves where water escapes. 

Therefore, fewer stomata from the smaller leaf surface reduce water loss, as evident on plants adapted to arid climates. More so, there are plants that even have their stomata only on the bottom epidermis. This is interesting to note as the leaf has three layers, and the part that is moist and responsible for photosynthesis is the one in the middle. 

 

Method #2. Structural and physiological mechanisms

Besides having fewer stomata or smaller surface areas on the leaves, plants have also developed structural mechanisms to control water loss. For example, plants use water storage cells and use them after they absorb water through the roots. 

 

Water storage in leaves and stems

The water will not be lost but will still be readily available when the plant needs it. Depending on the species, water storage can be the leaves or stems of the plant. On the other hand, there are also physiological mechanisms to help plants conserve water.  

 

Specialized photosynthesis

For example, plants can control water loss through a photosynthesis method that they have developed over time. This is true with most plants that thrive in dry climates where they regulate their stomata’ opening. These plants can store carbon dioxide efficiently for use during the day and use the stomata only at night. 

With this mechanism, the plants are not at risk of water loss during drought because of the lower metabolism rate. Therefore, they can maintain the critical mechanisms that require moisture to sustain life.

 

Conclusion

It’s incredible how plants have adapted to challenging conditions to sustain life. One would be curious about why plants need to control water loss as presented in different species. In general, water is crucial for the biochemical processes of plants, including photosynthesis. 

Therefore, you’ll find leaves that have smaller leaf surface area, fewer stomata, plants with water storage, and specialized photosynthesis to combat water loss. Remember that plants need evaporative cooling, nutrient and water uptake, and gas exchange, but this is only possible with transpiration. In challenging climates and environments, plants have created mechanisms to ensure that the loss of water won’t have a drastic effect on their lives. 

 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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