Deficiency or something else?

thepodpiperApril 29, 2009

I have been noticing leaves on some plants curling under and some leaf tips deformed, is this associated with a mineral deficiency? Another issue I am having is yellowing on the older bottom leaves of many plants but not all the plants. The canopy from so many plants being so close together may be the cause and a little to much water could be an issue for some because it is a large undertaking to water all of my plants and some get watered a little earlier than they need it.Does a magnesium deficiency cause yellowing?


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Hey Dale,

I really am not sure what is causing your problem. I was waiting for a more experienced member to respond.

When I saw the first picture I was going to respond, dont worry, bottom leafs die off naturally. After seeing the remaining pictures, IÂm not sure. I had yellowing issues on a good number of my starts but was able to correct it by adding epson salt (magnesium) to my watering regime for a few cycles.

What have they been fed so far? Are there any signs of pests? You may be on the right track thinking magnesium deficiency. A dose or two of water with 1-2 tbs pure epson salt per gallon may get them back on track.

FWIW, I found this entry on another pepper forum when someone responded to a member with yellowing / dying pepper plants. Obviously, based on your pictures, a number of them donÂt apply to your situation. Thought I would include it in case it helps you or others in the future.

Let us know how theyÂre doing now and what you decide to try.

Best of luck,



9 possible reasons why your plant's leaves are turning yellow.

1. The "Good News" reason is that leaves naturally turn from green to yellow then brownish and dry and shriveled

All plants?


2. Sudden unexpected cold

If a plant is used to suitable conditions then cold comes in, leaf yellowing and leaf drop is common

What to do?

Usually nothing, except with potted plants. If you expect more cold, shelter your plant indoors in a warm, bright area where people are comfortable

3. Heat

Many plants comfortable in moderate temperature conditions can "complain" by dropping leaves with ongoing excess heat. The time from green to yellow to drop can be very fast

What to do?

Consider if a better location is possible for this plant. For example, rather than a full sun location, a spot with afternoon shade could be your permanent solution

3. Too wet

Too much water chokes roots and very often causes leaf yellowing

In the case of potted plants, you control the water

4. Too dry

If water is needed and not available, a plant can not "hold" all its leaves. In defense plants shed leaves. In this case the green to yellow to drop process can be very fast

What plants want is consistent water for best growth and daily happiness. Of course, that amount varies by the variety of plant

5. Your new plant suddenly is getting sick fast. Yellow leaves are developing rapidly and leaf drop is scary

This situation is very common. We call this "decline" and yellow leaves are the first symptom. We have a separate article on this subject

6. A change of location

Virtually 100% of the time, if you move a plant to a new location, you will see leaf yellowing. Unless the new location is more suitable than the old location, your plant needs to adjust/adapt to the new location so leaf yellowing is part of the process

For example, if you move a plant into more sun, the leaves may be stressed. The plant "knows" the current leaves can't withstand the increase in sun sun and so, in defense, grows new leaves that can handle the new exposure

Moving to a location with less light//sun/hours/intensity, the plant can no longer "hold" the same amount of leaves so starts to shed leaves trying to balance light and leaf quantity

7. Fertilizer, especially liquid chemical fertilizers

Folks tend to use fertilizers in excess. Too much fertilizer, especially liquid chemical fertilizers, create a toxic situation and rapid leaf yellowing (burn) is the result

Fertilization is a very important subject and so we have a separate article on fertilization

8. Disease

There is virtually no technology for plant diseases. Scientists study causes but the "cures" side of the equation is almost zero

Your best defence is promoting plant health especially with proper feeding

9. Damage

Improper maintenance, often via your lawn man, can cause plant damage, like when using a weed whacker. You may not see (because you don't look closely) where equipment may have hurt your plants. Be sure you know how to manage your lawn man for starters

Damaged plants may be able to heal themselves. You may be able to do some pruning to assist. The main point is to avoid the damage in the first place

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 6:58PM
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