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What Causes Plant Leaf Tip Burns

Updated: Oct 18, 2023

Tip burn is a common problem that affects a wide range of plants, including both indoor and outdoor varieties. It is characterized by brown or black discoloration and necrosis (death) of the plant's leaves, typically starting at the tips and margins.

There are several possible causes of tip burn in plants:

Nutrient deficiencies: Tip burn can be caused by a lack of certain nutrients, such as nitrogen, calcium, or magnesium. These nutrients are essential for proper plant growth and development, and a deficiency can lead to a range of symptoms, including tip burn.

High salt levels: Many plants are sensitive to high levels of salt in the soil or water. If the soil or water contains high levels of salt, it can cause tip burn and other symptoms, such as leaf curling and yellowing.

Environmental stress: Plants can also develop tip burn as a result of environmental stressors, such as extreme temperature fluctuations, prolonged drought, or exposure to strong winds. These stressors can cause the plant to lose moisture, leading to tip burn.

Chemical exposure: Pesticides and other chemicals can cause tip burn in plants if they are applied incorrectly or at too high of a concentration. Be sure to follow label instructions carefully when using any chemical products on your plants.

To prevent tip burn, it is important to provide your plants with the proper nutrients, keep the soil or water free of high salt levels, protect them from environmental stressors, and use chemicals appropriately. If you are unsure of the cause of tip burn in your plants, it is always a good idea to consult with a plant expert or a horticulturalist for further guidance.