Explain why high concentrations of fertilizer in the soil might harm plants due to water movement into or out of root cells? Include a discussion of water potential.

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zoya786 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) eNoter

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  1. A high concentrations of fertilizer in the soil will raise the water potential of the soil water and so water will leave the plant root cells by osmosis.
  2. water potential is potential energy per unit volume.it is a tendency of water to move from the one area to another because of osmosis or gravity,mechanical pressure or surface tension.
  3. Water potential integrates a variety of different potential drivers of water movement, which may operate in the same or different directions. Within complex biological systems, it is common for many potential factors to be important. For example, the addition of solutes to water lowers the water's potential (makes it more negative), just as the increase in pressure increases its potential (makes it more positive). If possible, water will move from an area of higher water potential to an area that has a lower water potential. One very common example is water that contains a dissolved salt, like sea water or the solution within living cells. These solutions typically have negative water potentials, relative to the pure water reference. If there is no restriction on flow, water molecules will proceed from the locus of pure water to the more negative water potential of the solution; flow proceeds until the difference in solute potential is balanced by another force, for example, pressure potential.

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