Potassium silicate is a compound existing in two forms, solution and solid (glass); as a solution, it is a colourless, odourless, thick liquid, and is used in paints and coatings, as an arc-electrode binder and catalyst and in detergents; as a solid, it is a colourless and water-soluble solid, and is used in glass manufacture and for dyeing and bleaching.
Potassium silicate masonry paints have been in use for over a century to provide extremely durable, breathable colour coatings on all types of mineral based substrates, including stone, masonry, concrete and cement plaster (stucco).
Some cleaning formulations also use potassium silicate, which also serves as a corrosion inhibitor in cosmetics.
Potassium silicate is also used in horticulture; it is the potassium salt of silicic acid, and, in formulation, is readily absorbed by the plant. Silicon comprises 32% of the Earths crust, and silicic acid salts (silicates) are the most common form of silicon. Consequently exposure to silicates is widespread in activities involving contact with soil and natural water. The other part of the chemical, potassium is a required element for survival of both plants and animals, as is silicon.
Potassium silicate is an active ingredient to be used as a fungicide, insecticide and miticide. Potassium silicate will be used as a broad spectrum, preventative fungicide with optimum control obtained when used under a scheduled preventative spray program. Potassium silicate also provides suppression of mites, whiteflies, and other insects. It is approved for use on agricultural crops, fruits, nuts, vines, turf and ornamentals.
Why You Should Use Potassium Silicate.
Many benefits can be gained by using a good Potassium Silicate product in your feeding program. Increased tolerance of environmental stress, heat, cold, drought, water and soil toxicity or deficiency, improved growth rate both in the root zone and in the plant it foliage. By using Potassium Silicate with clones can increase the rate of roots kicked by as much as 80%.
Potassium Silicate is a natural fungicide, it helps build the plants defence from attacks by insects, fungi. Potassium Silicate helps the plant growth by depositing itself epidermal cell walls, enhancing the plant’s ability to keep the leaves pointed towards the light source. It also increases the stem strength, making it easier to hold up more weight. As the plant builds itself up with Potassium Silicate, it helps with balancing nutrient uptake and distribution, and increased concentration of chlorophyll and RUBP carboxylase in leaves. (AKA the Calvin cycle)
How Potassium Silicate Increases Resistance to Pathogens
Potassium Silicate is impregnated in the epidermal cell layer acting as a barrier against penetration of fungal attacks from powdery mildew, black spots, pythium and phytophthora and many more fugal problems. Silicate also increase the mechanical strength of the plant to help it in extreme heat and cold swings, salt build up in soils or increased TDS in water, and controls the rate of transpiration of plants.
Potassium Silicate plays an active role in combating fungal growth by the production of polyphenolic compounds, this is a main part of the plants natural defence against fugal and insect attacks.
The plants leaf system will rapidly bound potassium Silicate in the tissue and cell walls with in 24 hours of uptake. Therefore a continuous source of Silicate is very important. When silicate uptake by the plant it will start with the older growth and work is way into the newer growth to help build up the mechanical strength of the plant.
When adding Silicate to a foliage spray program, it will help lower the rate of disease attack and helps protect the plants new leafs from spider mites, aphids, and many other sucking type insects.
How Potassium Silicate Increases the Metabolic Rate of Plants
It has been shown that silicate improves resistance to wilt, resistance to water stress, can help fight heat stress up too 40.6ÂºC. If your plant has excessive transpiration, the plant will cease it metabolic function and stunted or no growth will occur.
Use of silicates in cloning or new seedlings helps speed up the rate of growth by as much as 90% (University of Florida and Minnesota). Also the study showed that 18% top 80% increase of dry weight of fruit and herbs.
It also increases reproductive rate in plants (Bud Growth). Increases tolerance of Zinc deficiencies, excessive phosphorus, manganese, sodium and aluminium toxicity.