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What's Wrong With my Plant? (part 1)

What's wrong with my plant? How to 'read' your leaves.


Having beautiful plants in your home or garden is a simple way to show off your green thumb. If the condition of your plants are starting to make you question whether you actually have any skills as a gardener, there's no need to fret. This helpful guide will give you simple tips to help you play plant doctor.
Plants, like people, require certain conditions to thrive. A lack of sunlight (or too much), too much water (or too little), and bugs are a few things that can turn your plant from stunning to sickly in a snap. Check out a few reasons why your plant may not be thriving.
Bugs can do a surprising amount of damage, especially considering how small they are. You'll notice bugs living on the leaves and may even see holes where the bugs have been enjoying lunch. Try spraying your plant with insecticide, according to Spring River Nurseries.
It's usually pretty obvious when your plant isn't getting enough water, but you can overwater a plant too. Look for leaves that are yellowing and wilted. Try repotting your plant in soil with better drainage and keep a lighter hand when watering.
If your plant starts to look droopy and tired, it may not be getting enough sunlight. Sun helps the plant produce the food it needs to grow. Make sure your plant is getting enough sun by moving it to a brighter location.
In addition to water and sunlight, your plant may need a boost of minerals to put more perk in their leaves. Common deficiencies include potassium, zinc, nitrogen and iron. Yellowing on the edges, or light discoloration all over the leaf are signs your plants may be lacking one or more minerals.
Plants need a mix of micro- and macronutrients to thrive. These nutrients are essential for healthy plant growth. Macronutrients like calcium, sulfur, magnesium, and nitrogen can found in lime and/or natural composts. Plants need micronutrients like boron, copper, iron, chloride, and zinc to grow, but they need less of them, according to NCAGR. Adding a bit of lawn clippings to your plants will provide enough micronutrients.
Watch your plants and monitor them for small changes so you can adjust the water, sunlight or nutrient levels at the first sign of trouble.