NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 Mineral Nutrition

CoolGyan’S provides NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Chapter 12 – Mineral Nutrition. Biology is a vast subject. NCERT Solutions for Biology have been framed by academic professionals and highly qualified faculty members who have explored their respective fields of interest thus imparting adequate information for the specific question as per the mark allotment taking into consideration the time factor.

To achieve success in board and competitive examinations, NCERT Solutions for Class 11 plays a prominent role. They are extremely comprehensible providing students with a strong foundation, making concepts clearer and simple to understand.

Most students face difficulties in understanding concepts. NCERT Solutions facilitate understanding of these concepts, precisely designed as per the requirements of Class 11 students.

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Access Answers to NCERT Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 – Mineral Nutrition

1. ‘All elements that are present in a plant need not be essential to its survival’. Comment


No, out of 105 elements absorbed by plants only about 17 elements are essential for plant growth and survival.

2. Why is purification of water and nutrient salts so important in studies involving mineral nutrition using hydroponics?


Hydroponics is a method of growing plants in the nutrition solution in the absence of soil. There are plenty of impurities in impure water in the form of soluble minerals that are dissolved in it. If this water is used as a solution culture to grow plants in hydroponics, these impurities will interfere with the experimental procesdure used to detect the elements. Hence, pure water and purified nutrient salts are utilized in studies involving mineral nutrition using hydroponics.

3. Explain with examples: macronutrients, micronutrients, beneficial nutrients, toxic elements and essential elements.


Macronutrients – Nutrients present in more than 10mmole kg-1 of dry matter in plant tissues are known as macronutrients. They are required in large amounts for plant growth. Ex: Carbon, Hydrogen, Oxygen, Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Sulphur, Potassium, calcium and magnesium.

Micronutrients – are the trace elements present in less than 10mmole kg-1 of dry matter in plant. Example – manganese, copper, zinc, boron, nickel

Beneficial elements – In addition to 17essential nutrients there are some beneficial elements required by higher plants in addition to micro and macronutrients. Ex: Sodium, Silicon, Cobalt and selenium.

Toxic elements are those which are required in trace amount. Their deficiency causes diseases in plants and excess in such nutrients are toxic to plants. Ex: Sodium, Potassium, Magnesium .

Essential elements – It is an element that directly interferes in the metabolism of the plant causing a specific deficiency symptom if not available to plants from an external source.

4. Name at least five different deficiency symptoms in plants. Describe them and correlate them with the concerned mineral deficiency.


Chlorosis: Loss of chlorophyll leading to the yellow colouration of the leaves. It is caused by the deficiency of N,

K, Mg, S, Fe, Mn, Zn and Mo.

Necrosis: It is the death of leaf tissue due to deficiency of Ca, Mag, Cu,K. It is the killing of cells expressed in the form of leaf spots, rots and blights.

Inhibition of cell division: deficiency in Mo, N, K and S causes inhibition of Cell division. They are expressed in stunted growth

Delay in flowering: In some plants it is caused due to low concentration of N, S and Mo.

Deformation – It is caused due to deficiency of boron. Deformation, disorganization, discolouration of the meristematic tissue and ultimately death of a growing plant.

5. If a plant shows a symptom which could develop due to deficiency of more than one nutrient, how would you find out experimentally, the real deficient mineral element?


Plants which show symptoms of multiple nutrient deficieny grown in different sets in water culture. Set 1 , 2 and 3 are given three different nutrients and are grown in hydroponics by supplementing one of the different nutrients showing deficiency. If real deficient element is supplemented then the plant will grow normally without showing deficiency symptoms.

6. Why is that in certain plants deficiency symptoms appear first in younger parts of the plant while in others they do so in mature organs?


Mobility of a deficient element decides the appearance of symptoms. If the element is relatively immobile then symptoms appear in young parts and if the deficient element is mobile, then symptoms appear in older parts of the plant.

7. How are the minerals absorbed by the plants?


The process of absorption can be established in two main phases. In the first phase, an initial rapid uptake of ions occurs passively into the ‘free space’ or ‘outer space’ of cells – the apoplast. In the second phase of uptake, the ions are taken in slowly into the symplast of the cells -‘inner space’ . The passive movement of ions into the apoplast usually takes place through ion-channels, the trans-membrane proteins that function as selective pores. The entry or exit of ions to and from the symplast requires the expenditure of metabolic energy and that is an active process. The movement of ions is usually called flux; the inward movement into the cells is influx and the outward movement, efflux.

8. What are the conditions necessary for fixation of atmospheric nitrogen by Rhizobium? What is their role in N2 -fixation?


Following conditions are necessary for fixation of Nitrogen by Rhizobium.

  • Symbiotic relationship between Rhizobium and roots- necessary for the formation of root nodules.
  • Necessity of a reducing environment
  • Nitrogenase enzyme – synthesizes ammonia
  • ATP- is required for the synthesis of ammonia
  • NAD(P) H2 or FMNH2 is a source of reducing power
  • Ferredoxin – acts as an electron donor
  • Keto acids picks up amino group.
  • nitrate as a substrate – creates reduced availability of nitrate

Role of Rhizobium in N2 fixation:

  • They fix atmospheric nitrogen in a form that can be used by plants i.e., ammonia, using the nitrogenase enzyme.
  • Plant, in turn, deliveries bacteria with proteins, carbohydrates and enough oxygen so that they do not disturb the fixation process.
  • A plant protein – Leghaemoglobin assists in providing oxygen for respiration process while free oxygen concentration level is still low enough to not hinder the nitrogenase activity.

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9. What are the steps involved in formation of a root nodule?


Formation of nodules involves following steps:

  • Rhizobia colonise the roots and get attached to epidermal and root hair cells.
  • Bacteria invade the root hair and make it curled.
  • Curling produces an infection thread which carries bacteria into the cortex of the root.
  • Roots nodules are formed at the cortex of the root.
  • When infected thread carries the bacteris to the inner cortex, it modifies the bacteria into rod-shaped bacteroids . It causes inner cortical and pericycle cells to undergo division. The division and growth of cortical and pericycle cells result in nodule formation
  • The vascular tissue continues with that of the root, then a mature nodule is complete

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10. Which of the following statements are true? If false, correct them:

(a) Boron deficiency leads to stout axis.

(b) Every mineral element that is present in a cell is needed by the cell.

(c) Nitrogen as a nutrient element is highly immobile in the plants.

(d) It is very easy to establish the essentiality of micronutrients because they are required only in trace quantities.


a) True

b) False- Every mineral element that is present in a cell is not needed by the cell.

c) False- Nitrogen as a nutrient is highly mobile in plants.

d) False- It is challenging to establish the essentiality of micronutrients because they are required only in trace quantities.

NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 – Mineral Nutrition

NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 – Mineral Nutrition is categorized under Unit 4 – Plant physiology. Students can expect a good number of questions to appear in the examination from this chapter. The Unit – Plant physiology comprises about 25% which is approximately 18 marks as per past trends.

Living entities have some basic needs which are common to all. We require macromolecules such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats, water, and minerals in order to grow and develop. The chapter focuses mainly on inorganic plant nutrition, wherein methods to identify essential elements for the growth and development of plants and criteria for establishing the essentiality is covered.

Listed below are the different types of questions that appear in the examination:

  • Knowledge-based
  • Application-based
  • Comprehension-based
  • High order thinking skills based questions
  • Evaluation type

List of subtopics covered in Chapter 12 – Mineral Nutrition

12.1Methods To Study The Mineral Requirements Of Plants
12.2Essential Mineral Elements
12.3Mechanism Of Absorption Of Elements
12.4Translocation Of Solutes
12.5Soil As Reservoir Of Essential Elements
12.6Metabolism Of Nitrogen

NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 – Mineral Nutrition

Plants obtain their inorganic nutrients from the soil, water, and air. They absorb a wide variety of mineral elements, but not all are absorbed. The elements that are required in large quantities are referred to as macronutrients whereas those required in lesser quantities are termed as micronutrients.

The chapter also discusses the role of essential elements, their major deficiency symptoms, and the mechanism of absorption of these essential elements. This unit also briefly introduces students to the significance and mechanism of biological nitrogen fixation.

Key Features of NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 – Mineral Nutrition

  • Solutions are easy to comprehend
  • Readily available to download for free
  • Complete solutions explained with the help of relevant examples
  • Use of diagrams wherever necessary
  • Tables used to understand and remember concepts easily
  • Pointers used to list out important keywords and frame solutions in the most efficient pattern

Frequently Asked Questions on NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12

How much marks can I expect from the Chapter 12 of NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology?

The Chapter 12 of NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology is categorised under the Unit 4. A good number of questions can be expected to appear in the exam from this chapter. About 18 marks i.e. 25% can be obtained by studying this chapter thoroughly. To get a grip on the concepts, students are advised to answer the textbook questions using the solutions available at CoolGyan’S. The solutions can be accessed both in online and offline format as per the convenience of students.

Where can I get the NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 PDF online?

You can get the NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 PDF from CoolGyan’S. The solutions are framed by the teachers having vast experience in the relevant subject. Students who find it difficult to answer the textbook questions can refer to the PDF to get a clear idea of the concept. The faculty make use of a simple and understandable language to help students perform well in the Class 11 exams. By practising on a daily basis, students will be able to understand the areas which they are lagging behind and work on them for a better academic score.

Why should I refer to the CoolGyan’S NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12?

You should refer to the CoolGyan’S NCERT Solutions for Class 11 Biology Chapter 12 as they are easy to comprehend. The solutions are available in a PDF format which can be downloaded and accessed by the students without any time constraints. Numerous examples are present before each exercise to help students understand the type of questions which might appear in the annual exam. Diagrams are used wherever necessary in order to help students to learn the concepts visually.