What's Wrong with my Plants? - Part 1

Your guide on how to recognise deficiency or overdose of elements - Part 1

There are six basic elements that our plants need in order to grow and be healthy:

  • Nitrogen (Azote)
  • Potassium
  • Phosphorus
  • Magnesium
  • Calcium
  • Iron

Let's have a better look at them. Today we will concentrate on the first three and in our next blog we will look at Magnesium, Calcium and Iron.

Nitrogen (Azote)

Nitrogen is an essential element responsible for building the green parts of plants. It is very important when it comes to growth season. If plants do not receive enough Nitrogen the following may happen:

  • The plants grow slowly with weak new growth,
  • the leaves become yellow and with time even brown,
  • stems becoming woody to early.

Conversely if we provide too much Nitrogen it might also harm our plants. If plants:

  • grow unusual big,
  • have dark green, mat leaves,
  • flower late,
  • are more sensitive to cold weather and fungus diseases.

it might be a sign of too much Nitrogen.


Potassium is responsible for regulating the water balance in the plant cells, which helps plants to survive the dry days, and helps with diseases and frost resistance.

A lack of Potassium can cause:

  • weaker growth and lower crop yield,
  • later bloom with small and pale flower colours,
  • yellow edges on the old leaves, which later on become brown and dry, curling under the actual leaf,
  • greenish/blueish colour of the leaves,
  • plants wilting,
  • bad plant ramification.

If soil is too rich in Potassium it usually means it contains too much salt. Plants will wilt and dry in these conditions.


Phosphorus is important when it comes to flowering and the production of seeds.

If there is lack of Phosphorum our plants will:

  • flower late and badly,
  • fruit poorly,
  • leaves will become greenish-blueish with purple spots, the lower leaves can change colour to orange.

As you can see gardening is not as easy as it seems to be. If you wish to get the professional advice do not hesitate to contact a member of our garden maintenance team. We are always happy to help.