Ferric Ethylenediaminetetraacetic Acid (FeEDTA) Photodegradation in Commercially Produced Soluble Fertilizers

in HortTechnology
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  • 1 U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, 2001 S. Rock Rd., Fort Pierce, FL 34945; to whom reprints should be addressed: e-mail: jalbano@ushrl.ars.usda.gov.
  • | 2 Department of Horticulture, Box 340375, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634-0375. Current address: Dept. of Floriculture and Ornamental Horticulture, Cornell Univ., Ithaca, NY 14853.

Irradiation of, ferric ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (FeEDTA, iron chelate)-containing commercial fertilizer solutions by fluorescent plus incandescent lamps resulted in the loss of both FeEDTA and soluble iron (Fe), and the formation of a yellow-tan precipitate that was mostly composed of Fe. The ratio of soluble Fe:manganese (Mn) was altered due to FeEDTA photodegradation from 2:1 in the nonirradiated solutions to 1:4 in the irradiated solutions, respectively. Storing fertilizer solutions in containers that were impervious to light prevented FeEDTA photodegradation.