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Common plant problems and ways to avoid them

May 03, 2014
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A plant can face multiple problems related to foliage, flowers or fruits in its life cycle. Below are the main categories of plant problems and their solutions.

Foliage problem

A leaf turning yellow or brown is a commonly seen plant problem. It is due to improper watering habits. In case of under watering, leaves turns yellow at base and start dying. Plant looks droopy. Brown crispy leaves are also an indicator of under watering.

On contrary, yellow/ brown wilted or limped leaves are sign of over watering. In case of over watering leaves tips turn brown, old as well as new leaves also start falling off the plant.

Variegated or colored foliage plants lose their variegation pattern or color when grown in shaded place. Move those plants in a well lit, bright place.

Sometimes variegated plants produce an all green shoots which is more vigorous than normal variegated shoot. Cut out these reverted shoots as soon as possible otherwise they will overgrow the plant.


Flowering problem

If flowering has declined on the plant then it may be due to lack of potassium in soil or wrong pruning habits. Potassium is an important element which plant requires for proper flowering so in this case give your plant potassium based fertilizer available in the market. If this is not the case and you have pruned it recently then chances is that the plant has been pruned in wrong manner or season.

Sometimes due to pest infestation flowers fall prematurely. So in this case identify the pest first and then treat the plant with any suitable biological or chemical method.

Some plants require deadheading for continuous flowering. For this you require to pinch out the dead flowerheads using finger and thumb.

Read Also : How to treat common plant problems ?

Read Also : Tips for getting rid of mealy bugs.


Pest problem

If the plant is not growing well and is stressed then it can invite pests and diseases. Defensive approach is the best way to avoid this problem. Give your plant proper water, light and food so that it could grow vigorously and save itself from any pest attack.

However, if pest problem occurs then identify type of the pest first and then apply its controlling methods.


Establishment failure

Failure of establishment can be due to inappropriate soil type or pH, insufficient watering or wrong way of planting. To avoid this read thoroughly about plants pH requirements, keep plants well watered in initial days of planting. While planting in pots make sure excess water is drained out of the pot otherwise it will cause rot in the plant and thus establishment failure.

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