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Do You Know The Best Way To Fortify Your Soil? Plant A Cover Crop!

So often when plants don't thrive, gardeners look for obvious reasons like insect or disease pressure or improper watering. But oftentimes, the problem is nutrient-deficient soil. The most common nutrient deficiency is nitrogen. An easy way to fix a nitrogen deficiency? Plant a cover crop.

Cover Crops:

  • Replace minerals lost over time

  • Add organic material & beneficial microorganisms back into soil

  • Reduce erosion

  • Prevent weeds

If you notice any of the following conditions, your soil might be nutrient deficient.


  • Wilting might not always be caused by too much sun or heat.

  • Sometimes wilting leaves or drooping plants are a sign that soil is too low on nitrogen or has improper aeration.

Slow or Stunted Growth

  • Plants showing slow or stunted growth could be a sign that soil is low in nitrogen, low in acidity or too high in clay content.

  • Slow growth could also be a sign of a potassium deficiency.

  • It's always a good idea to test your soil to confirm what it might be deficient in before adding amendments. A good way to add potassium to the soil is by adding a banana peel or two. Just place the peels near the plant and cover with mulch. As it breaks down, it releases its potassium back into the ground.

Colorful Leaves

  • Did you know that a nitrogen deficiency can cause leaves to yellow?

  • If you see older leaves turning purple or very dark green with burnt-looking leaf tips, a phosphorus deficiency could be to blame.

  • If leaves curl inward and have a burnt appearance (especially with purple spots on their undersides), the most likely culprit is a potassium deficiency.

No Blooms

  • If plants are experiencing good growth, but have little to no blooms, the problem could be an excess of nitrogen in the soil.

  • Remember to go slow when adding compost or trace minerals to avoid an excess.

  • Lack of blooms can also be a sign of too few pollinators. Try planting flowers among your veggies to attract birds and bees, who will take care of pollination for you.

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