Mineral Nutrition Class 11 Notes - Chapter 12

According to the CBSE Syllabus 2023-24, this chapter has been removed from NCERT Class 11 Biology textbook.

All living organisms require macromolecules such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, water and minerals for growth and development. The important elements required in mineral nutrition include:


These nutrients are required by the plants in large quantities. These include carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus, sulphur, potassium, etc.


These nutrients are required by the plants in small quantities. These include iron, copper, manganese, molybdenum, chlorine, etc.

Also Access 
NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12
NCERT Exemplar for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12

Essential Elements

Mineral nutrition in plants is required for a variety of functions, such as growth, repair and photosynthesis. A deficiency of these essential elements can cause a variety of diseases that can range from chlorosis to necrosis. Elements like boron, calcium, chlorine, copper, iron, magnesium, molybdenum, manganese, nickel, phosphorus, potassium, sulfur and zinc have been documented to have beneficial effects on the growth and sustenance of plants.

Functions of Mineral Nutrients

The mineral nutrients perform the following functions:

  1. Carbon, hydrogen and oxygen enter into the cell wall and protoplasm and form the plant body.
  2. The minerals present in the cell sap maintain the osmotic pressure of the cell.
  3. Calcium, sodium and potassium maintain the permeability of the cell membrane.
  4. The cations and anions affect the pH of the cell sap.
  5. A few salts and minerals balance the harmful effect of other nutrients.
  6. Several elements act as catalysts for biochemical reactions.

Also Read: Mineral Nutrition

Role of Macro and Micronutrients

The following are the major functions of macro and micronutrients:

Mineral Nutrients



The important constituent of nucleic acid, protein, hormones and vitamins


Promotes root growth and fruit ripening


It acts as an activator for several enzymes

Facilitates the formation of the middle lamella of plants and acts as an enzyme activator


It plays a vital role in the metabolism of carbohydrates, lipids

The major constituent of amino acids and vitamins


It plays an important role in the energy conversion reaction reactions of respiration and photosynthesis, activates nitrate reductase and aconitase

Essential for chlorophyll synthesis, initiate photolysis of water


It plays an important role in photophosphorylation

It helps in the synthesis of ascorbic acid


Helps in the photolysis of water in photosystem-II

Deficiency of Mineral Nutrients

The deficiency of major mineral nutrients is given below:

Mineral Nutrients

Deficiency Symptoms


Impaired plant growth, chlorosis, delayed flowering and fruiting

Premature leaf fall, necrosis


Delayed flowering and fruiting, premature leaf fall

Mottled chlorosis, inhibition of protein synthesis and photosynthesis


Chlorosis, distortion of leaf shape

Interveinal chlorosis, depression of internal phloem


Chlorosis, inhibition of protein synthesis and chloroplast formation

Wilting of leaves, brown edges, leaf spots 


Causes “die back” disease in leaves, Reduction in vegetative and reproductive growth.

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Important Question on Mineral Nutrition Class 11

  1. What are macronutrients?
  2. Define micronutrients.
  3. Name some elements that are toxic to plants.
  4. How does the absorption of minerals take place in plants?
  5. How is nitrogen in the atmosphere utilized by the plants?

Further Reading

Nitrogen Fixation And Nitrogen Metabolism

Role Of Macronutrients And Micronutrients

Important Questions on Mineral  Nutrition

Frequently Asked Questions on CBSE Class 11 Science Notes Chapter 12 Mineral Nutrition in Plants


What are micronutrients?

Micronutrients are vitamins and minerals required by the plant in very small amounts.


What is nutrient density?

The nutrient density of a food is the ratio of beneficial ingredients to the food’s energy content for the amount that is commonly consumed.


What are macronutrients?

Macronutrients are vitamins and minerals required by the plant in large amounts.


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