Plant nutrient deficiencies can be diagnosed by examining the foliage. Most symptoms will show up on older leaves. Healthy plants require nutrients that can be adversely affected by many environmental conditions.

  • Lack of nutrients
  • Soil pH
  • Too much nutrients
  • Over-watering
  • Under-Watering

Lack of Nutrients

Nutrients can be added to soil by choosing the right fertilizer. Adding too much of a nutrient can accidentally create a new problem by locking up other nutrient elements.

Soil pH

Soil pH in the range of 5.2-5.8 will provide most plants the easiest availability to nutrients. pH outside this range begins to make the nutrient elements unavailable for plant uptake.

Too Much Nutrients

Adding too much of some nutrient elements can lock the element into a chemical bond with other elements and make them unavailable. The most common is too much phosphorus, which easily bonds with calcium or magnesium.


Over-watering can lead to root rot. And plants with no roots can not take up nutrients.


Water is required to allow plants to absorb nutrients.

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