Nitrogen deficiency in cannabis plants: How to recognize the symptoms in your plants and how to fix them

Stickstoffmangel bei Cannabispflanzen: So erkennst Du die Symptome an Deinen Pflanzen und kannst sie beheben - FARBIO® - Nachhaltige Bio-Flüssigdünger aus Hamburg

A cannabis plant requires a number of nutrients to grow optimally and ensure healthy development. A lack of nitrogen is common and can significantly affect the growth and development of your plants. In this article, we will look at how to identify a nitrogen deficiency in cannabis plants, examine the causes of this deficiency and finally talk about measures to correct the problem!

These are the most important nutrients for your cannabis plant

Before we delve into nitrogen deficiency, it is important to understand which nutrients are critical to the healthy growth of cannabis plants. There are some essential nutrients that plants need to thrive. These nutrients fall into two main categories: macronutrients and micronutrients.

Macronutrients are nutrients that are needed in larger quantities:

Nitrogen (N): Important for leaf growth, protein formation and general plant development.
Phosphorus (P): Promotes flower formation, energy transfer and root development.
Potassium (K): Supports cellular health, water regulation and disease resistance.
Calcium (Ca): Calcium improves nutrient availability to plants, stomata regulation, improves cell membrane strength, cell division and disease resistance.
Magnesium (Mg): Magnesium plays an important role in the formation of green leaves. Furthermore, it is essential for regulating the water balance of plants and for the formation of proteins.
Sulfur (S): Sulfur is used to build proteins and cell membranes within plants. It is involved in many metabolic processes.

Although micronutrients are needed in smaller amounts, they are just as crucial:

Iron (Fe): Important for photosynthesis and the formation of chlorophyll.
Zinc (Zn): Participates in various enzymatic processes in the plant.
Manganese (Mn): Promote the growth and development of the plant.
Copper (Cu): Supports the formation of leafy greens and the overall health of the plant.
Boron (B): Important for flower formation and fruit development.
Chlorine (Cl): Chlorine is crucial for a functioning water balance and disease defense.
Molybdenum (Mo): Molybdenum is necessary for the activation of enzymes and enzyme metabolism.

Symptom of nitrogen deficiency

Nitrogen deficiency can present itself in a variety of ways, and early detection of these symptoms is crucial to treating the problem in a timely manner. Here are some of the most common signs of nitrogen deficiency:

1. Yellowing leaves: Yellowing leaves is one of the first signs of nitrogen deficiency. The leaves gradually lighten, begin to yellow at the edges, and may eventually turn brownish. This usually happens with the older leaves (lower leaves), while the young leaves (upper leaves) remain green for now.

2. Slowed growth: When nitrogen is deficient, plants grow slower than usual — plants may remain smaller than expected.

3. Lower yields: Too little nitrogen can not only lead to discoloration, but can also have a negative impact on your yield because the plant produces fewer flowers and buds.

Yellowed leaves of cannabis plant

What is chlorosis? Yellowing of leaves

Chlorosis is the most noticeable symptom of nitrogen deficiency in cannabis plants. It is a condition in which the leaves turn yellow due to a lack of chlorophyll. This is the green pigment in the leaves that is responsible for photosynthesis. If there is a nitrogen deficiency, the plant cannot produce enough green leaves, which leads to this characteristic yellowing.

Chlorosis usually first appears on the lower leaves of the plant and gradually spreads upward if the deficiency is not corrected. This is an indication that the plant is having difficulty absorbing or transporting nitrogen from the soil.

This is how nutrient deficiencies occur – eliminating nitrogen deficiency in cannabis

There are several reasons why cannabis plants can develop a nitrogen deficiency. Here are some common causes and steps that can be taken to resolve the issue:

Improper Fertilization: The main nutrients a cannabis plant needs are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K). During the growth phase, your plant needs a higher proportion of nitrogen to promote growth. During flowering, it requires more phosphorus and potassium to support flower formation and resin production.

Irregular fertilization can lead to a nitrogen deficiency. As soon as the young plants develop their first true leaves, you should use a high-quality organic fertilizer throughout your plant's entire life cycle.

The FARBIO® Nitrogen Bio-Boost is suitable for the acute treatment of a nitrogen deficiency. It supports and strengthens your plants with extra nitrogen - for intensive leaf green, fewer yellow leaves and pronounced growth. This foliar fertilizer enables particularly rapid absorption and therefore high efficiency: simply mix with water and spray onto the leaf surface. Organic active ingredients ensure that the risk of over-fertilization is minimized!

Nitrogen Bio Boost

2. Soil pH: Soil pH can affect nitrogen uptake. Make sure the pH is in the optimal range for cannabis plants — between 6 and 7. A value outside of this range can reduce the plant's availability of nitrogen.

3. Environmental conditions: Extremely high or low temperatures can affect the uptake of nitrogen by plants. Make sure the location is optimal.

4. Overwatering or Poor Drainage: When the soil is too saturated, the roots of plants cannot access nitrogen efficiently. Make sure the soil is well-drained and allows excess water to drain away.