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does my lemon tree needs iron ?

bigdoc T
2 months ago

hi all what's your advice here,

Is this an iron deficiency?

it flowers a lot but no lemon !!!



Comments (40)

  • Ken B Zone 7
    2 months ago

    What do you fertilize with and how much/how often?

  • Silica
    2 months ago

    It is showing the symptoms of a magnesium deficiency.

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  • bigdoc T
    Original Author
    2 months ago

    we just came back from a bad summer so no fertilizers for the last 6m or so due to the heat wave and humidity

    BTW i live in Jeddah Saudi Arabia (always sunny and humid)

  • Howard Martin
    2 months ago

     Bigdoc T  maybe that way Was  good for the trees because that way the extra fertilizer and nutrition still In the soil or growing medium  can get used up and cut  down mineral salt burns 


      And this also gives the trees a little bit of rest from the chemical fertilizer  but I'm no expert 


    HOWARD

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    ..... not a magnesium (Mg) deficiency, which presents in citrus first as chlorotic spots near the leaf stem, between the midrib and leaf margin. As the deficiency progresses, the entire leaf becomes chlorotic except for an arrowhead-shaped green spot at the base of the leaf with the tip of the arrowhead pointing at the leaf tip. It's difficult to tell just exactly what it is, but it appears likely to be a micronutrient deficiency (possibly manganese and/or zinc), or, potentially being caused by an EC/TDS level too high (too much salt in the soil [solution]).

    In any case, and even if it was a Mg deficiency, the best way to remedy a deficiency is not by guessing at what nutrient might be deficient and acting on supplying that nutrient alone. The knee-jerk reaction would be to dose with Epsom salts for its Mg content, but that can present it's own issues, like masking the actual deficiency and limiting uptake of Ca(lcium) and potassium (K).

    Question: Did you make your own grow medium? If yes, how long has the plant been in it and did you use dolomitic lime as a source of Ca/Mg?

    This is most likely an issue related to the grow medium, but here is how I would go about fixing any nutritional problems:

    The first thing I would do is flush the soil thoroughly. To flush the soil of a container planting: Water with room temperature water until the soil is completely saturated. Allow the planting to rest for 15 minutes to an hour to allow as much of the salt accumulation as possible to go into solution, then slowly/ evenly pour a volume of room temp water equal to at least 10X the volume of the pot the plant is in slowly through the soil. This will remove most of any accumulation of offending salts, resolve any skewing of nutrient ratios, and effectively reset the grow medium's nutrient load to zero. Once that is completed, fertilize with a fertilizer that contains all nutrients essential to normal growth. A soluble synthetic fertilizer gives the grower the most control over what nutrients the plant receives and when they receive them. That cannot be said for organic sources of nutrition, especially nitrogen. A fertilizer with a 2:1:2 or 3:1:2 ratio would be a good choice. The fertilizer RATIO is different than its NPK %s. For example: if you were to choose a 3:1:2 ratio fertilizer, 24-8-16, 12-4-8, and 9-3-6 all have a 3:1:2 ratio and are commonly available in the US. Unfortunately, I don't know what you have available where you live, so can't recommend anything more specific.

    When you water, you should be watering to beyond the point of total soil saturation, so at least 20% of the total volume of fertilizer exits the drain hole at any given watering event. This carries away accumulating dissolved solids and prevents skewing of fertilizer ratios, which can lead to antagonistic deficiencies, deficiencies which occur because an excess of one nutrient limits uptake of another. Examples: Magnesium and calcium are mutually antagonistic, so too much of one limits uptake of the other. Too much phosphorous in the grow medium can cause a deficiency of one or more nutrients (calcium, potassium, iron, copper, zinc). Some deficiencies can be caused by cultural conditions. Examples: a soggy medium limits Ca uptake and low temperatures limit phosphorous uptake. There are many more examples of antagonisms and synergism shown on Mulder's charts.

    It makes more sense to tie the frequency with which you fertilize to the number of times you have watered. With soluble synthetic fertilizers, fertilizing every 3rd to 5th time you water is about right. If you habitually flush the soil as you water, you can also fertilize with soluble synthetic fertilizers at maintenance level fertilizer solutions every time you water/ fertigate, if you prefer. If you decide to tie your nutritional supplementation frequency to the number of times you have watered, you can simply drop a marble, button, other object into the pot on top of the medium whenever you water. This will allow you to automatically keep track of what plant needs fertilizer and when it needs it.

    Plants are made of chemicals and their true food is sugar/ glucose, which the plant creates from CO2 in the surrounding air, water, and light energy from the sun, during the process of photosynthesis. However, If nutrients actually were 'plant food', it could be said that a plant's only diet would consists of an assortment of salts which occur as a result of a reaction between an acid and a base, and which are absorbed in ionic form from the soil solution. As such, plants do not need a break from and cannot long deal with an absence of chemical salts in the soil solution

    Al

  • Silica
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    TLTR

  • Silica
    2 months ago

    Definitely a Magnesium deficiency. In citrus a Magnesium deficiency is shown by a green delta (triangle shape) pattern on the leaf starting at the bottom and coming to a point toward the leaf's apex. As for the possibility of a zinc or manganese deficiency, bigdocks leaves do not come anyware close to showing either deficiency symptom.

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    .... and the plant does not present the arrowhead type shape at the base of the leaf.


    Magnesium deficiency ^^^. Note the arrowhead shape at the base of the leaf and compare to my description.

    See here/ compare with OP's images and note what Zn/ Mn deficiencies look like in citrus.

    It's worth noting that hobby growers are wrong far more often than right when diagnosing nutritional deficiencies based on leaf appearance, and the frequency of being wrong goes way up when diagnoses are made with no sense of cultural conditions or knowledge of history, which is why I didn't speak in such absolute terms.

    In all honesty, what the deficiency might be is far less important than getting the soil flushed and the plant back on a well-managed nutritional supplementation regimen. Still, I'll stick with what I said, and note that FSU seems to be in agreement as well.

    The plant has several cultural issues which all need to be addressed via a holistic approach if the plant is to be returned to good health. Singling out and treating the plant as though the only issue is a Mg deficiency is sure to end in disappointment.

    Al

  • Silica
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    Tapia, looking at your above picture, I would agree that is a magnesium deficient leaf. Your picture DOES INDEED show the arrow head pattern pointing up of a magnesium deficiency.? What type of plant is that in your picture? Once again bigdoc's tree is suffering from a lack of magnesium. Tapia, have you ever actually grown any citrus?

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    You, I, and FSU agree the image in my post shows a Mg deficiency; however, the image FSU kindly provided so we can see what a Mg deficiency looks like, looks nothing like Doc's tree. According to FSU "The first symptom is a yellowish green blotch near the base of the leaf between the midrib and the outer edge. The yellow area enlarges until the only green remaining is at the tip and base of the leaf as an inverted V-shaped area on the midrib. With acute deficiency, leaves may become entirely yellow-bronze and eventually drop", which sounds remarkably like what I described (as how a Mg deficiency presents in citrus) and contrasts sharply with the image Doc provided. There are no leaves in Doc's image that look like onset, intermediate, or serious Mg deficiency. But if you follow the link to FLU's guide to nutritional issues, you WILL find images that look remarkably like Doc's tree, which also coincides with what I suggested as a potential cause.

    I think focusing on this kind of minutia is to ignore the larger matter of how to best approach the issue to ensure resolution (and that's what I did), no matter whether there is a deficiency of any particular nutrient or an EC/TDS level too high.

    Al

  • Silica
    2 months ago

    Tapia, you did not answer any of my questions. First, have you ever grown a citrus tree, and 2 what type of plant is shown in your picture. I certainly does not look to be a citrus.

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    I haven't answered your questions because I don't feel obligated to answer them; but yes, I have grown several species of citrus, more than a dozen species of fig, persimmon, apple, pear, cherry, kumquat, plum, Japanese and Chinese quince, mulberry, pomegranate, and other fruit-bearing trees. I found citrus very tolerant of container culture and easy to keep healthy, but lost interest in them because their habit of shooting out long straight branches makes them a generally unruly subject for bonsai, which is where I focus most of my attention insofar as gardening. I have also grown 100-150 additional species of trees (in containers and in the landscape) that wouldn't normally be considered as fruit-bearing trees; among them, pine, juniper, elms, hornbeams, beech, yew, chamaecyparis, larch, boxwood, arborvitae, cedar, hemlock, maples, oak, hackberry, winterberry, holly, bittersweet, burning bush, zelcova, sumac, barberry, mini jade, schefflera, brush cherry, Japanese snowbell, grewia, stewartia, witch hazel, cypress, santolina, potentilla, linden, ......... all of which I am able to keep extremely healthy, the hundreds of images I've posted on fora pages bearing witness to that fact.

    About the image - you might want to contact FSU . It came from a guide they published (A Guide to Citrus Nutritional Deficiency and Toxicity Identification), which I linked to above; but they probably misidentified it ..... and the deficiency ..... from what I'm hearing, right? You should let them know about their errors.

    Al

  • Howard Martin
    2 months ago

     Tapla( mid Michigan USDAZ5b -6a)  there are A few ways to restore your mangesium to your trees   you can get  a fertilizer that has  higher amounts of magnesium    try ground egg shells on the soil or t medium  or Yu can do use a spray bottle  with  Epsom salts  or u can put Epsom salts on your soil  or growing medium but I'm know expert

  • Ken B Zone 7
    2 months ago

    So back to the OP's question, just start using a well balanced fertilizer regularly and your tree will be fine. Foliage pro or jacks 25-5-15 high performance are great fertilizer for citrus. You want to stay as close to a 5-1-3 ratio as you can since citrus takes up nutrients at a 5-1-3 .

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    @Howard Martin Mg deficiencies are misidentified by hobby growers far more often than correctly identified, and this thread is testimony to that fact. Even if only for the tendency to misidentify nutritional deficiencies, it is better to take a more holistic approach to remediation of any nutritional deficiencies a grower might think are in play.

    Let's say you identify a magnesium deficiency correctly. What then? Who knows what to use and what would be an appropriate remedial dose of what's being used? I often see the suggestion to use Epsom salts @ 1 tbsp/gallon of water, which is about 12x stronger what could be considered an appropriate remedial strength dose. Soaking the grow medium with that strength solution is likely to immediately limit the plant's ability to take up potassium and calcium while acting as a synergist to increase uptake of nitrogen and phosphate, so if you HAD a reasonable nutritional supplementation regimen in effect, that would pretty much undo it.

    When it comes to the array of nutrients in the soil/ soil solution, there is an optimum combination of those nutrients (see Liebig's Law of Limiting Factors below). Increasing availability of one or more of these nutrients above what is needed has no power to be beneficial, only the power to be limiting, and a excess of any nutrient (an excess is a toxicity) has the same ability to limit as a deficiency. For all the reasons mentioned, and more, it is wise to avoid dosing plants with any concoction aimed at providing one or two nutrients. Almost inevitably it will move the nutritional content of the soil/ soil solution away from any semblance of an 'optimum combination' of nutrients.

    Ideally, you would flush the soil of it's existing nutritional content, thereby and in essence resetting the grow medium's nutritional value to zero. Then, apply an appropriate fertilizer which contains all nutrients (normally acquired via the root pathway) essential to normal growth, at a ratio and solution strength that optimizes the rate at which every nutrient is absorbed.

    I'll also post something I wrote which outlines what I feel is the ultimate goal of nutritional supplementation of plants in containers. If you'd like to disagree and think the goal needs revision, I'd be happy to discuss it.

    If the reader takes anything away from this post, I would hope it's an understanding of the complications associated with the practice of focusing on one or two nutrients as needing individual supplementation. Instead, reset the grow medium's fertility level to nil by flushing the soil, then use a fertilizer with a ratio that optimizes uptake of all nutrients.

    Liebig’s Law

    There are 6 factors that affect plant growth and yield; they are: air, water, light, temperature, soil/media, nutrients. Liebig's Law of Limiting Factors states the most deficient factor limits plant growth and increasing the supply of non-limiting factors will not increase plant growth. Only by increasing most deficient factor will the plant growth increase. There is also an optimum combination of the factors and increasing them, individually or in various combinations, can lead to toxicity for the plant.

    Nutrient Supplementation - Objective

    Whenever we discuss what is or isn't an appropriate part of the methodology we use to make certain our containerized plants get all the nutrients essential to growth and good health, we would probably first want to be sure our objectives are on target. It's difficult to argue with the idea that our focus in supplying supplemental nutrition to our plants should be on ensuring all the nutrients plants normally assimilate from the soil are A) IN the soil and available for uptake at all times, B) in the soil in a favorable ratio - that is to say in a ratio that mimics the ratio at which the plant actually uses the nutrient, C) at a concentration high enough to ensure no nutritional deficiencies, yet still low enough to ensure the plant's ability to take up water, and the nutrients dissolved in that water won't be impeded (by a high concentration of solubles in the soil solution).

    At this point, one might accept these premises as worthy goals or argue against them. If accepted, we should then necessarily examine our efforts at supplementation in the light of whether or not our efforts bring us closer to or limit our ability to see the goals implemented.

    BTW, Howard, eggshells are almost entirely CaCO3 (calcium carbonate), which is virtually insoluble at pH levels at which we normally grow, meaning there would be no notable benefit from using them in container media. If there is a large enough volume of them, they might be of some minor benefit in mineral soils (gardens/ beds) as the Ca becomes available through the process of mineralization.

    Ken - 20-20-20, 14-14-14, and 5-5-5 are all examples of a "well balanced" fertilizer. The NPK % of 25-5-15 and the ratio 5:1:3 wouldn't be considered balanced.

    Also, if all citrus take up nutrients at a ratio of 5:1:3, why do they make citrus fertilizers with NPK %s of 20-10-20, 3-5-5, 8-2-2, 8-11-11, 6-3-3, 9-12-12, 5-2-6, and on and on, all over the map and none of which come close to a 5:1:3 ratio?

    Al

  • Silica
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago


    >>>>>>>, if all citrus take up nutrients at a ratio of 5:1:3, why do they make citrus fertilizers with NPK %s of 20-10-20, 3-5-5, 8-2-2, 8-11-11, 6-3-3, 9-12-12, 5-2-6, and on and on, all over the map and none of which come close to a 5:1:3 ratio? <<<<

    • Al the above argument is simply just plain ridiculous.
  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    First, it isn't an argument, it's a question, can you answer it?

    It's easy to cast aspersions. Show my error ......., but keep in mind there is a very wide gulf between a "balanced fertilizer" and a "balanced fertilizer program or strategy", which would be site specific. Balanced fertilizers are almost never the most appropriate choice to supplement nutrition, whether the plant being fertilized is in a container or the ground.

    * A balanced fertilizer contains NPK in equal amounts by weight.

    * To be a complete fertilizer, the product must only contain some N, P, and K. Proportions do not matter.

    * A slow release fertilizer (like most lawn fertilizers) is a granular product that releases nutrients over an extended time via dissolution with the release rate determined by multiple factors (moisture levels, temperature, soil biota, pH, .....).

    * A controlled release fertilizer (like Osmocote) is usually in the form of round prills with various coatings, with coating type, coating thickness, and primarily temperature driving release rate.

    I'll wait.

    Al

  • Howard Martin
    2 months ago

     Tapla eggs Shell  do contain a small amounts of magnesium

  • Howard Martin
    2 months ago

     In the case of iron deficiency  put some nails In the soil or plant growing medium

  • Silica
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    Al, if you would like to know the determination that citrus trees take up nutrients in a 5-1-3 NPK ratio you can read it in the text book titled "The Genus Citrus" pg. 40 thru 44. The fertilizer 25-5-15 as suggested above by Ken B is indeed an outstanding fertilizer for citrus.

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago

    I never passed judgement on the fertilizer, so that's a straw man, and it looks like you don't have anything material to contribute in support of anything you said. There are a lot of significant errors in this thread and everyone prefers saying I'm ridiculous and changing the subject rather than staying on topic. That says a lot.


    Al

  • Vladimir (Zone 5b Massachusetts)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    @tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a) There is a problem with your argument where you said: why do they make citrus fertilizers with NPK %s of 20-10-20, 3-5-5, 8-2-2, 8-11-11, 6-3-3, 9-12-12, 5-2-6, and on and on, all over the map and none of which come close to a 5:1:3 ratio?

    You may know that companies sell what they call "citrus potting mix" that is overly water retentive and is deadly to citrus. So just because a company calls their fertilizer a citrus fertilizer does not mean that it is appropriate for use on citrus.

    By the way, the moderator and others who have substantial experience growing citrus on the Tropical Fruit Citrus Forum use fertilizer with a 5:1:3 ratio.

    You also said, re the variety of citrus fertilizers on the market: First, it isn't an argument, it's a question, can you answer it?

    You must know the answer. It is the same as why they sell things like bloom buster fertilizer, etc. It is because they can sell that stuff to unsuspecting people.

  • Ken B Zone 7
    2 months ago

    Some people can never be wrong and thread after thread goes down the drain when a certain poster is involved. Everybody's environment is different and different things work in different environment and that can be different than what works on paper. I don't need or appreciate being talked down to in rude and condescending ways so I just don't reply to that poster but I feel bad for the original poster in those threads as their questions get lost in the dribble. People can have a wealth of information on a topic but present it as no other way is right and that is not helpful in my opinion.

  • Howard Martin
    2 months ago

    Tapla I know this may be a last resort maybe you can talk to your fertilizer company and have them make up a piticular fertilizer mix the will help you out  better  after all they want to know when thein products aren't doing thte job  but please this is only a suggestion I'm no expert but this approach just might possibly be the  the best approach until then  use a 1/4 teaqspoon of emposm salts per  quart of water that way you can At the very least you give them some magnesium now through some spary bottle by foliar feeding   but I am no expert these are only suggestions


    Howard

  • Howard Martin
    2 months ago

      Everybody is focused on the NPK  and not addressing the the issue here is the magnesium deficiency   now we need to focus on the  magnesium up take to prevent others that maybe on the side lines monitoring   the forum  to help them from getting the. Same problem  right now the NPK isn't the real focus here it's the magnesium

  • Ken B Zone 7
    2 months ago

    Howard, they haven't fertilized in over 6 months, the tree needs all nutrients.

  • Alex [Zone 6a Lithuania.]
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    bigdoc T

    A professional will not be able to give you the right advice, only from your photo. But there's something to be said confidently:

    - Is it an iron deficiency?

    - Not.

    - Is it a magnesium deficiency?

    - Not.

    - Is it a 5-1-3 fertilizer deficiency?

    - Not.

    Such problems can arise for 6 different reasons. In my country, most often this is the result of improper watering. And as a result, damage to the roots.

  • Silica
    2 months ago

    TLTR

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    @Ken B Zone 7 While we all might be entitled to our opinions, it's undeniable that opinions are not all created equal. Many opinions are expressed w/o the inconvenience of foundational support, sometimes by people more intent on being noticed than helpful. The surest way of making clear where the limits of our knowledge lie is by overstepping them; and unfortunately, opinions expressed without sufficient knowledge to act as the opinion's underpinnings are no more than an expression of one's personal prejudices. In addition, when we do overstep we invite expression of opinions built on stronger foundations. The reason it might seem like “I'm always right” is because I've long been committed to operating within the limits of my knowledge. That makes my positions easy to support/ defend and not easy to counter, but it also makes it unpalatable for me to cede to someone who hasn't the will or consideration to limit themselves to what they can explain or topics they have a command of.

    If someone is right, I'll never say different. If someone is wrong and the error has the potential to diminish the growing experience of others, I'll speak up as I did in this thread. When I do, I always provide the information that led to any conclusion I've made. I think this is a pretty mature way to approach the exchange of information, and it provides others with an opportunity to evaluate what is being said. That has kept me in good stead here at GW for my 20 years of participation, and there is a way to confirm that.

    One thing I have discovered during time spent in fora settings is, others are less interested in our opinions than the reasons we give for holding them, and it's the reasons we give for holding any given opinion that drives our credibility, and credibility is all we have to offer if we're really here to help others. Too, let's not forget we all have an equal opportunity to support our offerings.

    Al

  • Silica
    2 months ago

    TLTR

  • Vladimir (Zone 5b Massachusetts)
    2 months ago

    @tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a) You said: "Many of the opinions are expressed w/o the inconvenience of foundational support ...." Please explain what you mean by "foundational support" and what "foundational support" do your opinions have?

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    Since you asked, foundational support consists of factual information, evidence, and reasoning that leads a person to their conclusion. If I don't supply it with every conclusion, you know I'm always ready to. More than 3/4 of what I wrote is in support of my positions and if anyone sincerely feels there is more support needed, one has only to ask.

    Foundational: (Mg deficiency] presents in citrus first as chlorotic spots near the leaf stem, between the midrib and leaf margin. As the deficiency progresses, the entire leaf becomes chlorotic except for an arrowhead-shaped green spot at the base of the leaf with the tip of the arrowhead pointing at the leaf tip. It's difficult to tell just exactly what it is, but it appears likely to be a micronutrient deficiency (possibly manganese and/or zinc), or, potentially being caused by an EC/TDS level too high (too much salt in the soil [solution]).

    In any case, and even if it was a Mg deficiency, the best way to remedy a deficiency is not by guessing at what nutrient might be deficient and acting on supplying that nutrient alone. The knee-jerk reaction would be to dose with Epsom salts for its Mg content, but that can present it's own issues, like masking the actual deficiency and limiting uptake of Ca(lcium) and potassium (K).

    I spoke of the fact that Mg is a mobile nutrient and as such a deficiency would be more conspicuous in older foliage, and there is obviously no hint of that in Doc's image.

    When this wasn't enough, I went looking and found/provided images, text, and and a link to a FSU Guide to Citrus Nutritional Deficiency and Toxicity Identification, which showed how a Mg deficiency presents in citrus. Virtually all I said upthread was supported with information based on plant physiology, soil science, and a line of reasoning people can follow.

    In this thread and many others, and if one pays particular attention, a repetitive and intentional pattern becomes clear. Habitual incorrect use of my user name, nasty comments, and the anagram (TLTR, which = 'too long to read') posted after many of my longer offerings gives readers a glimpse of their author's mindset. Who can disagree with the idea the wasted energy might better have been put toward producing light, but was instead purposed to the creation of heat? I don't really mind these little jabs because I realize that in putting a lack of self control on display, one grants authority to the object of derision.

    Al

  • Dave in NoVA • N. Virginia • zone 7A
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    It's most likely a watering and soil issue. First it needs to be repotted in a good well-draining soil. Perhaps go up in a pot size. It's hard to tell the pot size because of the photo parallax. Only then should a good fertilization program be begun.

  • Silica
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    A manganese deficiency, in a citrus tree; the newest leaves show green veins WITH ADDITIONAL GREEN BODERS to both sides of the vein. A zinc deficiency in citrus also looks somewhat to a manganese deficiency but with DWARF LEAVES. Neither of these symptoms are displayed in bigdoc photo. What is plainly shown is a magnesium deficiency. Tapia, I doubt you have ever actually seen a magnesium deficiency in an citrus tree, as you don't grow citrus, yet you feel free to tell people who have grown citrus for 20 years that they are wrong. Merry CHRISTmas.

    .

  • Howard Martin
    2 months ago

     Scilcia I'm saying  if  Tapla isn't satisfied  with a fertilizer product  she can get a hold of her fertilizer company and tell them she is not satisfied   and ask them to make her a custom mix don't you agree with this advice

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    Click to see Florida State University Guide to Citrus Nutritional Deficiency and Toxicity Identification

    Mg deficiency (figure 6):


    What I said: "A magnesium (Mg) deficiency presents in citrus first as chlorotic spots near the leaf stem, between the midrib and leaf margin. As the deficiency progresses, the entire leaf becomes chlorotic except for an arrowhead-shaped green spot at the base of the leaf with the tip of the arrowhead pointing at the leaf tip." It's difficult to tell just exactly what it is, but it appears likely to be a micronutrient deficiency (possibly manganese and/or zinc), or, potentially being caused by an EC/TDS level too high (too much salt in the soil [solution]).

    Compare what FLU says to how I described what the deficiency looks like, and, what happens to be a pretty good description of the image they chose to represent the deficiency: The first symptom is a yellowish green blotch near the base of the leaf between the midrib and the outer edge. The yellow area enlarges until the only green remaining is at the tip and base of the leaf as an inverted V-shaped area on the midrib (Figure 6). With acute deficiency, leaves may become entirely yellow-bronze and eventually drop.

    The descriptions are almost exactly the same, so to cast doubt in my direction is to refute what FSU published for public consumption in their guide.

    What the issue with the foliage is is quite unimportant. It's clearly not a Mg deficiency, and even if it was, to try to treat a deficiency of a single nutrient in a tree so close to the abyss would be absolutely silly, so a diagnosis of Mg deficiency is unworthy of action in this case because there are so many other issues. Nothing will improve the lot of Doc's tree other than correcting the factor most limiting (see Liebig's Law of limiting Factors). In order for action to relieve a speculative Mg deficiency to be of value, lack of Mg would necessarily be the tree's largest challenge, and I hope you aren't suggesting that.

    Now, there is a significant likelihood the plant is suffering a deficiency of several nutrients, either by an actual paucity of those nutrients in the soil or because cultural conditions are preventing uptake. Soil saturation or compaction often cause symptoms of collective deficiencies because they can significantly depress flow rate and/or distal extension of the nutrient stream, but this plant is not saying "I have a singular deficiency and I need Mg". It's telling us it's desperately trying to cope with several cultural conditions at or beyond the limits it's genetically programmed to tolerate and wants it's care giver to improve those cultural factors that negatively influence the plant - soil structure - especially as it concerns the air:water ratio, watering habits, quality of the irrigation water, nutritional supplementation/ fertilizer choice, light levels, temperature, .... .

    Al

  • Silica
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    Yet another ton of words and assumptions about a genes you know nothing about, as you have never grown a citrus tree.. Al, you need to actually grow a citrus to obtain some modicum of standing.

  • tapla (mid-Michigan, USDA z5b-6a)
    2 months ago
    last modified: last month

    I'm not concerned about my standing, and as I have told you many times, I have grown several species of citrus, more than 150 other species of trees in containers, and was/am very successful at it. Habitually and predictably saying untrue things about me and distorting my words isn't a good look, so why not just let it go?

    Even if what you charge was true (it's not) and I had never grown a citrus tree, for 40 years now (since 1980) I have been a student of the fields of science which allow me to continually increase my proficiency at growing trees and other plants in containers. Bonsai is my focus, and bonsai is an advanced form of container culture - container culture with a difficulty factor of 5-10 added. Most people realize it is not necessary to become the bus driver to understand what makes the wheels go around and around. Trying to clip someone else's wings will not lift you up.

    Al