Why are my plants turning yellow?

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by Reurra, Jun 5, 2012.

  1. Reurra

    Reurra Crowing

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    So I planted a garden about 2 weeks ago. This is my first garden ever. I used 4 bags of topesoil and 4 bags of cow manure blended into a 10x20 plot. I planted beans, and they cam up but are starting to turn yellow. My zuccinis seem to have died but 2 managed to come up out of about 8 seed holes. I got tomato, tiny tim tomato and cucumber and squash transplants. The cucumbers are dying, 2 died, thier stalks are turning dry. My squash plant is starting to look pale yellow and getting a dry stalk too. The tomatoes have yellow starting on the outer fringes and the tiny tims are getting yellow around the lower leaves. My pumpkins came up ok without any trouble, so far. The garden gets full southern exposure from about 9am to 9:30 p.m.

    Whats wrong with my plants??

    We do have slugs and they have chewed on a few but not seriously. The problem seems to be in the soil, thats my guess. I dont want to use slug poison because I dont want to poison my birds since I free range them a bit. We have ants too, but they dont seem to be in the garden that I ahve seen.

    Our soil here is pretty rocky, but ive done alot to soften it up. The dark clumps are some of the heavier bits of cow manure. This first picture is my squash and cucumber and the small bushy plants are my tiny tims.

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    These are my bean plants I planted as seeds. They seem to have turned bright yellow.

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    Last edited: Jun 5, 2012
  2. bucky52

    bucky52 Songster

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    to wet?to much manure,could be over fertilized.we put to much manure on ours one year and everything came up than died.so now we plant a fall cover crop.and it has really improved our soil.and hubby springles 10-10-10 on the garden in the spring as he plants.the garden plot has been in use for 60 plus years.I would say to much manure.
     
  3. ladyrsanti

    ladyrsanti Songster

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    I agree, probably too heavy on the manure.
     
  4. Reurra

    Reurra Crowing

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    How can i fix it? Is there any way to?
     
  5. Reurra

    Reurra Crowing

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    The manure is the kind you buy at the store in a bag. I read that some manure has nitrogen in it and can burn plants. I also have top soil which has organic matter in it, does it also contain nitrogen?

    If I were to gently dig up the plants and pack the area with regualr soil might that help? Or is my garden doomed? I was really looking forward to plants thie year [​IMG]
     
  6. ladyrsanti

    ladyrsanti Songster

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    You can try to dilute it with some less organic material but some plants do not transplant well. The beans and squash may be easier to replant with new seed as they don't like being disturbed. The tomatoes should be alright to carefully dig out. What kind of top soil are you dealing with? Generally store-bought top soil is pretty much sufficient for a garden. I would then add small amounts of organic material for fertilizing - as needed at planting time. You don't want compost to come in direct contact with your plants and roots as it can burn them. I prefer to build up my soil gradually, year after year, adding compost before and at planting and then a cover crop after planting that is tilled in.
     
  7. Reurra

    Reurra Crowing

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    I just got the ordinary bag top soil. I have my garden in raised rows so i was thinking I might bring in some more dirt, either bagged or something else that can fill in the rows, then carefully transplant everything over. Basically shift everything over 6 inches. I dont know if the old rows will cause problems. I might need to dig them out completely and put the soil around the edges of the garden or something until they fertilizer is diluted. Perhaps next spring. Whats there to lose right? My poor garden!! [​IMG]
     
  8. Indigosands

    Indigosands Songster

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    Agree, nitrogen burn. If you can get leaves I'd mulch it heavily with leaves. I've sprinkled epsom salts around beans and tomatoes and watered heavily to rescue them when as a newbie I used too much miracle gro. It worked. Also heavy plantings of pumpkin or squash, whatever you can get the most of cheaply will help draw it out. Just let them sprout and grow for a few weeks then rip them out.
     
  9. GardenerGal

    GardenerGal Songster

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    I don't think the manure is the problem, unless it is totally raw and uncomposted. Aged manure in bags does not burn. I've had pumpkins pop up in almost pure (bagged) cow manure and not have the problems you are having.

    What it -does- look like, to me, is that your soil is deficient in micro minerals, especially iron. Either that, or the pH is wrong for the kinds of plants you're growing. The plants in the photos, especially the tomatoes, have leaves that look like they are pale green with dark green veins -- a symptom of iron deficiency. But you could also be lacking manganese and other micros.

    First thing to do is test the pH (soil acidity-alkalinity) to see whether maybe that is what's affecting your plants. Buy a soil pH test kit (garden shops sell them) to test whether your soil is too alkaline or too acidic for the plants you are trying to grow. Garden veggies tend to prefer a neutral or near-neutral soil, a pH of 6.5 to 7 or so. If it's too extreme one way or another, it affects the plants' ability to absorb and utilize soil nutrients.

    If the pH is okay, then your soil is probably lacking in essential elemental nutrients. For a quick fix, use a liquid "complete" fertilizer that contains chelated iron, copper, manganese, boron and other micronutrients, as well as nitrogen, phosphate and potassium (the "Big Three"). Soak the soil at the plants' bases. There are fertilizer applicators you attach to your garden hose that make this easy.
    For the long-term fix, work more manure thoroughly into the soil between the plants and rows, and after the growing season is over, work compost and manure into the soil and topdress with a mulch of chopped straw and leaves to sit there over the winter and turn it under in the spring. If you have chickens and/or other poultry and livestock, you can use their soiled bedding as a top-dressing or side-dressing too, now during the growing season (makes a great moisture-retaining mulch as a side dressing) and over the winter.

    Hope that helps.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2012
  10. Reurra

    Reurra Crowing

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    Im going to try getting some minerals then. I figured our dirt here was pretty good. Strawberries grow wild like crazy here. I guess Ill be getting some supplements for the soil lol. Maybe it will solve the problem. If not, Il try removing the fertilized soil and putting in some regular dirt.

    Are there any safe slug killing things that wont harm my chickens? I have lots of bedding i can use as a cover for winter. What does the cover do?
     

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