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  HOME »  PLANT NUTRIENTS
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Vegetation Management Section

Materials

Plant Nutrient Deficiencies

Nutrient Function Deficiency Signs Toxicity Signs
Macronutrients
Nitrogen Root absorbed, converted to ammonium and combines with carbohydrates to form proteins. This produces healthy leaves, stems and root systems. Most notable effect is vibrant green color that is produced in plant. Stunting of shoot growth, decreased leaf size, pale green to yellow in color, copper color in leaf tips if problem continues Deep blue green leaves, soft texture, delayed maturity, possible scorching of leaves
Phosphorus Root absorbed, plays a role in cell division, helps develop growing point of plant (meristematic tissue), involved in sugar development, found in photosynthesis, involved in flower and seed development. Slow growth, delayed maturity, older leaves begin to show dark green discoloring turning to dull blue green, dwarf growth habits but not to degree of nitrogen deficiency Toxicity is rare
Potassium Root absorbed, helps regulate osmotic pressure and turgidity of plant, considered a catalyst because it influences cell division, enzyme activity, & translocation of sugars Weak stalks, small fruit or seed, drooping leaves, chlorosis of the leaves, younger leaves will show signs of starvation Toxicity is rare
 
Secondary Nutrients
Calcium Root absorbed, aids in regulating osmotic pressure similar to that of phosphorus Death of growing points, abnormal dark green appearance, weakened stems, fruit disorders Toxicity is rare
Sulfur Involved in protein development similar to that of nitrogen Paling of older leaves similar to nitrogen, scorching effect along edges of leaves until it withers up Toxicity is rare
Magnesium Root absorbed and aids in movement of phosphorus throughout plant, it is found in the chlorophyll molecule Interveinal chlorosis in older leaves, curling of leaves upward, marginal yellowing along mid-rib of leaf Toxicity is rare
 
Micronutrients
Zinc Essential to enzyme systems, acts as growth regulator Stunting growth, thinning, shriveling, & drying up of leaves Toxicity is rare
Iron Required for chlorophyll production, activator for respiration, photosynthesis & nitrogen fixation Young actively growing leaves show yellowing, and eventually blades become white or ivory Brown leaf spotting at low point of plant
Manganese Activator for enzymes in growth processes, assist in chlorophyll production Similar to iron deficiency, leaves droop but remain green, localized tissue death Yellowing, upward cupping of leaves
Copper Bluish discoloration of young leaf tips, death of leaf tips and progression toward stem   Very rare, chlorosis
Molybdenum Helps to transform nitrates into amino acids Older, lower leaves begin paling, stunting will develop, localized tissue death along with withering Root depression, yellowing, browning of leaves
Boron Involved in meristematic cells as a differentiator Delayed symptoms, shoots are discolored, stubby leaf appearance, growth point stunting Localized spotty death in veins
Chlorine Involved in photosynthesis Not often noticed Burning of leaf tips. premature yellowing

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For any questions about this page, please contact:
Derek Smith -- Contact Us -- (919) 707-2939




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