Garden Troubleshooting is a critical skill to learn in this hobby. Below, I’ll cover a few of the most common issues and causes of garden issues. Happy Troubleshooting!


Seedlings Not Germinating

There are several possible reasons for your seeds not having germinated yet. It could be as simple as not enough time has passed. Be sure that your soil is not too dry and your seedling mat is the correct temperature for what you’re trying to grow. Also, be sure you’re starting the best seedlings for the current time of the year.


Seedling Wilt & Death

The most common cause of seedlings wilting and dying is damping off, a common fungal disease. Other common causes of this situation are cutworms, maggots, dry soil, rotting roots, or even over-fertilizing. If they’re wilting, DO NOT overwater and check for bugs or worms at the base of your plants. Always try to keep your seedlings free of rotting weeds and plant matter. You can also treat the soil with a fungicide. 


Plant Wilt

The most common cause of plant wilt is too much or too little water. Your roots may have root-knot nematodes or root rot. Try to water deeply and consistently for best-growing results. However, if the soil is soggy, stop watering and let the soil dry up. Another way to avoid plant wilt is to plant disease-resistant varieties and practice good crop rotation.


Weak & Spindly Plants

Three of the most common causes for this issue are over-crowding, too much water, or not enough light. Excessive amounts of nitrogen are a possible but very uncommon issue caused by over-fertilizing. Always be sure that your plants get a minimum of 6-8 hours of sunlight daily, improve your seedling drainage, and always adequately thin your plants. 


Slow Growing with Green Leaves

The usual cause of this situation is not enough light. It’s also a good habit to check the temperature for your plant variety and the moisture in the soil. Never overwater, and be sure to have adequate drainage. Check your soil amendments and pH levels if you feel you have nutrient deficiency. 


 Stunted Growth with Yellow Leaves

Yellow is usually a sure-fire sign of insufficient nutrients. Aged manure and a complete fertilizer are ideal for your soil. However, acidic soil, poor drainage, insects, and disease could also be the culprit. Test your pH and pull any plants you suspect to be affected from your garden.


Yellow Leaves without Wilt

Not getting enough sunlight and soil deficiencies are two of the main culprits for this condition. Thin the affected plants and move to a sunny location if they don’t receive at least 6-8 hours of sunlight a day. 


Brown Spots on the Leaves

Chemical burns or over-fertilizing are the common cause of this issue. Potassium deficiency or cold temperatures could also be the cause. If your soil seems dry, water more frequently. If you’ve over-fertilized, remove the excess by overwatering for a couple of days. Wood ash, aged compost, or manure will help deal with a potassium deficiency. 


Scorched Leaves

If your leaves have a burnt look about them, there are several possible causes including, low temperatures, over-fertilizing, dry soil, and salty soil. Low temperatures are avoided by covering the plants, and runoff may be flooding poorly drained gardens. Salting around your garden may also burn leaves, don’t over-fertilize, and water regularly.


Curled Leaves

The common causes for curled leaves are moisture, aphids, disease, or excessive herbicides. Aphids are treated by spraying leaves with a mixture of insecticide and water. Remove infected plants if you think they have signs of disease. Keep the soil moist, and try mulching around the base of any plants suffering from curled leaves.


Leaves with Tiny White Spots

Spider mites are the likely cause of this condition. Spray the affected plants with an insecticidal spray to clear them up. 


Powdery White Coating on Leaves

Powdery mildew is the culprit here. The cause of this condition is when the plants are dry, but the ground around them is moist. Planting in full sun and using adequate spacing to promote good air circulation should solve this issue.


Rotten Tomato Blossoms

Blossom rot causes include compact soil, root injury, inconsistent water, or a calcium deficiency. Placing mulch around plants that are affected can promote soil moisture. Lime will offset a calcium deficiency and don’t forget to compost organic matter in your soil.


Lack of Fruit

You can have a beautiful plant that won’t produce fruit. The common reasons for this are too much nitrogen or a lack of pollination. You can try your hand at hand pollination techniques. 


Hopefully, this short guide to garden troubleshooting has helped you solve your issue. However, if you’ve got issues other than the ones listed above, please, contact us HERE, and we’ll see if we can help you or add another garden troubleshooting issue to the page!


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