The Benefits of Metalosate® Calcium in Apples
Calcium is critical to plant growth including to the structure of binding cell walls and it directly impacts fruit quality, storage and shelf life. Calcium generally moves relatively slowly through a plant. Therefore, calcium deficiencies may profoundly affect young tissue and cell division. This may present itself as deformed tissue and death in growing points like buds, blossoms, and root tips. Ensuring Calcium can move effectively to the areas of a plant with the greatest demand requires an application which moves quickly through the plant to those areas. Calcio Metalosate® is powered by Albion® technology and contains chelated minerals that move through plants more efficiently than other calcium applications.
Bitter pit is a disorder that causes brown spots and can affect apple storage and shelf life. In South Africa the use of Metalosate Calcium has reduced bitter pit in apples to less than 1 percent. Studies show the ability of Metalosate Calcium to penetrate through the peel and enter the flesh of the fruit. Most calcium foliar products, including EDTAs, stick to the peel of the fruit. A true test of calcium concentration is to peel the fruit and measure the calcium concentration of the flesh.
During a regular growing season, an orchard of Fuji apples in Washington State was divided into three blocks. The
first was treated with eight pounds per acre of calcium chloride, the second with two quarts per acre of a liquid calcium acetate material, and the third with one quart per acre of Metalosate Calcium. Each block received three applications at these rates1.
Chart 1 demonstrates the peel concentrations are higher for calcium chloride and calcium acetate than Metalosate
Calcium, but in the flesh of the apples the Metalosate Calcium has the highest concentration. Considering the volume of the peel versus the volume of the flesh, significantly more of the Metalosate Calcium penetrated the flesh than the other two treatments. This is how Metalosate can positively effect fruit quality. To learn more about Balchem’s line at Metalosate products contact your local Balchem representative.
Voet, L., “The Effect of Calcium Metalosate and Potassium Metalosate Foliar Applications on Nutrient Levels in Tree Fruit Production,” Proc. Albion’s Conference on Plant Nutrition, 35-49.