Deficiency of any essential nutrient can hinder growth and development of a crop. Well-nourished crops are generally more tolerant of diseases compared with sub-optimally nourished crops.
Nitrogen is involved in the metabolic processes. It is a component of proteins and metabolic compounds involved in disease defense. Disease control through nitrogen management is generally indirect, but it is an important mean of increasing production efficiency.
It has been widely reported that a balanced and adequate supply of phosphorus reduces stress, improves physiological resistance, and decreases risk of diseases.
Potassium alone or in combination with nitrogen, phosphorus, and other nutrients can minimize the severity of diseases. Potassium is involved in several metabolic processes as regulator of several physiological pathways.
Boron involvement in lignification and phenol metabolism indicate its benefit in crop defense mechanism against disease. Copper is a cofactor of enzyme systems required in stimulation of crop defense mechanisms against diseases. Iron is involved in metabolic activities important during respiration, DNA synthesis, and photosynthesis. All these processes play major roles in the disease defense systems of crop. Manganese can provide opportunity for direct and indirect effects on defense mechanism of crop.