One of the major problems in agricultural crop production that is important worldwide and should be taken into account is soil salinity. The soil salinity refers to the amount of salt in the soil and can be estimated by measuring the electrical conductivity (EC) of the soil sample. Salinity affects almost all aspects of plant growth, including: germination, vegetative growth and reproduction. Soil salinity causes ion toxicity, osmotic stress, nutrient (N, Ca, K, P, Fe, Zn) Deficiencies.
One of the effects of soil salinity on plants is the decrease in water uptake. In saline soils, high salt concentration raises osmotic pressure. Osmotic pressure is closely related to water absorption and plant growth, and consequently, its elevation reduces water absorption and wilts the plant.
Another negative effect of soil salinity on the plant is the high level of a particular ion in the soil that causes toxicity in the plant. When a plant absorbs harmful salt ions in saline soil, there may be some visual symptoms, such as stunted plant growth, small leaves, marginal necrosis of leaves or fruit distortions in the plant. This is called ion-specific toxicity.
One other negative effect of salinity is interference with uptake of essential nutrients in plant. An imbalance in the amount of salt in the soil can lead to competition between elements. The high amount of one ion limits the absorption of another. For example, excessive chloride reduces nitrate uptake, the addition of excess phosphorus to the soil reduces manganese uptake, and potassium reduces calcium uptake.
In the BioGME technology applying BioGME solutions, salinity reduction around the root is clearly observed. BioGME solutions eliminate the harmful effects of salinity by increasing soil cation exchange as well as by providing suitable chemical conditions around the root.