What is Humic Acid and How Does it Work?

Date May 05, 2020


Author TreeNewal Staff

Keeping your trees healthy is significantly important for a variety of reasons. To begin with, healthy trees improve the curb appeal of any property, neighborhood, and area. Second, healthy trees provide essential ecological benefits to the community. Lastly, healthy trees don’t pose any danger to any surrounding property, people, and animals.

Trees are complex living things and need an abundance of various nutrients to not only stay alive but also thrive. Certified Arborists mainly use humic acid to promote positive tree growth. Humic acid provides undeniable benefits to property owners and their trees. Using humic acid can create strong trees that are able to withstand both diseases and pests.

To learn more about humic acid, continue reading this helpful article.

What is Humic Acid?

Humic acid is directly sourced from leonardite shale, a vitreous mineraloid. It’s a common ingredient in commercial fertilizers. Humic acid is one of the most concentrated organic materials you can find.

Humic acid contains about 50% carbon and 40% oxygen. Other compositions include hydrogen (5%), nitrogen (3%), phosphorus, and sulfur (both at 1%).

Humic acid is a very complex amalgamation of closely-related macromolecules. These macromolecules vary in size. Some are much less than 1000 daltons, and some are larger than 100,000 daltons. The larger the mass, the older the material.

Since it is organic, it’s composition varies from one material to another. For example, some Arborists receive their humic acid from North Dakota that is derived from vegetation and trees in the area. The humic acid in this area was created during the Carboniferous period in North America when that area was a noticeable sunbelt.

Over the years, the vegetation and trees in this area experienced extreme pressure, compaction, and heating. This resulted in a process known as carbonation, and the vegetation turned into coal. The compaction removed the esters and organic acids that are commonly present in vegetation.

These substances formed a pool on top of the vegetation, which dried and ultimately converted to leonardite shale. Because of its vegetative origin, humic acid is very useful to today’s plants and trees.

How Does Humic Acid Work?

Understanding the origin of humic acid may be a bit complex if you’re new to the topic of horticulture. However, its application is actually very straightforward. By adding humic soil, it can help bind the present cations.

In basic chemistry, a cation is a positively charged element. In addition, humic acid has a useful ability for chelating positively charged multivalent ions. These include Magnesium, Iron, Calcium, and other trace materials.

When chelating the positively charged multivalent ions, humic acid leads to the uptake of these ions due to specific mechanisms, one of which includes preventing them from leaching through the soil.

The other mechanism is the positive and direct impact on the bio-availability of the soil. Humic acid detoxifies any soil of excessive, heavy metals. Extensive research has proved that these heavy metals can be locked up with the use of humic acid. Humic acid can be both added to the soil by itself or with a fertilizer.

What are the Benefits of Humic Acid?

Humic acid has a ton of noticeable benefits to plants and trees. These lucrative benefits include:

  • Humic acid increases the uptake of nutrients in the soil.
  • Humic acid boosts drought intolerance.
  • Humic acid improves seed germination.
  • Humic acid leads to an increase in microbial activity in the soil and is a brilliant root stimulator.
  • Humic acid results in more availability of nutrients existing in the soil and fertilizers.

As you can see, there are a variety of benefits of humic acid. It can help aerate the soil, making it ideal for maximum tree growth. Lastly, humic acid can reduce the pH level of the soil and flush salts out of the roots, all of which resulting in optimal tree growth.

Why You Should Hire a Certified Arborist

Applying humic acid to the soil surrounding your trees is a great way of making sure they achieve maximum growth. To be fully certain that humic acid is correctly applied to your soil, you should hire an Arborist.

These individuals specialize in tree services and can carry out these services professionally. Certified Arborists, in particular, have successfully passed a comprehensive examination providing their immense knowledge of trees and related horticulture.

This means they are qualified to know how to apply the correct amount of humic acid to your soil.

Give Us a Call Today!

Humic acid is an integral component of optimal tree growth.

To learn more about Humic Acid and how it works, call us today at tel:(817) 592-6846 or send us a message.

We’re a little different than the average tree services company.

Learn more about TreeNewal’s ISA Certified Arborists!

Our Argyle and Southlake based tree surgeons can explain how sustainable tree care services add more value to your bottom line.

Healthy trees, healthy lives.