No Spray Question of the Day ANSWER: 06/10/2013

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Question of the Day

Answer for Monday June 10, 2013

Question: Is there a deficiency in this plant? If so, what is it?

a) Phosphorus
b) Potassium
c) Nitrogen
d) no deficiency
e) too old


Answer: C, Nitrogen

Yellowing of the older leaves is one of the most common signs of Nitrogen deficiency. Nitrogen is a mobile nutrient. When there is not enough for the plant to take up in the soil the nitrogen in the older leaves will move towards the younger parts to continue growing, making them yellow. The yellowing and dying off of the older leaves is nature’s way of providing itself with free mulch.

Common ways to add nitrogen to a natural garden, landscape or larger farm is through continual addition of compost and mulch. The use of farm animal manure (composted) and worm castings are also great sources. Another way is purchasing organic manures like chicken pellets or bat guano with low nutrient values and adding them to the surface with mulch or compost.

Deficiency in a natural garden doesn’t happen right away, so just the same there is no “quick fix”. One of the best methods to prevent or treat deficiencies is a weekly applications of compost and or mulch. Depending on how intensively you garden (more plants in smaller areas), you can also add worm casting, composted chicken, or bunny manure.


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