While nickel is not considered an essential nutrient for most plant species, it is still important for the growth and health of some plants and lawns. Nickel is required for the activation of several enzymes involved in plant metabolism, including urease, hydrogenase, and superoxide dismutase.
Urease is an enzyme that breaks down urea, a nitrogen-containing compound commonly used in fertilizers. Without adequate nickel, urease activity can be inhibited, leading to reduced nitrogen uptake and decreased plant growth. Hydrogenase is an enzyme involved in hydrogen metabolism, which is important for energy production in some microorganisms that live in the soil. Superoxide dismutase is an antioxidant enzyme that helps protect plant cells from oxidative stress caused by harmful reactive oxygen species (ROS).
While most plants and lawns do not require large amounts of nickel, deficiency can occur in some soils or growing conditions. Nickel deficiency can lead to stunted growth, reduced vigor, and decreased resistance to pests and diseases. Symptoms of nickel deficiency can vary depending on the plant species and the severity of the deficiency.