Causes of Calcium Deficiency in Houseplants

Causes of Calcium Deficiency in Houseplants
Causes of Calcium Deficiency in Houseplants | image source: A13ean, CC3

In plants, calcium performs a crucial role. It enables greater plant growth. What consequences do plants suffer from a calcium deficit, then?
Continue reading to learn the causes and treatments for calcium deficiency.

Life is dependent on calcium. We already know that it is crucial for us, but did you also know that it is crucial for plants?
That is correct! Plants need calcium to grow, so it’s important.

Let us be technical

Considered a secondary nutrient, calcium is crucial for plant growth. It plays a significant part in the synthesis of cell membranes and cell walls.
In terms of soil structure, calcium is also essential. In order for plants to always have access to calcium, the soil itself needs to have calcium.

Keep this in mind

This mineral is not very mobile. It does not migrate up to be consumed by newly developing tissues once it has been used up, in other words.
This explains why soils and plants frequently have calcium deficiencies.

 Calcium Importance

Calcium is crucial for soil and plants. Plants require it because it maintains their health. Healthy plants are both tastier and more nutrient-dense. When calcium is present in the soil, water infiltration is improved.

How does Calcium work

Calcium removes salt from the soil, potentially enhancing the soil’s overall quality. Water penetration is poor in soil that is high in sodium and low in calcium.
You are aware that one of the most crucial nutrients you should give plants is water. Make sure the soil has enough calcium to enable plants to absorb the necessary amounts of water.
How can you tell if your plants are lacking in calcium? Here are a few signs:

1. Damaged leaves

You already know how your plants’ leaves will appear. Therefore, if it is developing differently, it may be due to a calcium deficiency. The edges of some leaves are curved. Some of them are discolored.
Additional indicators
You can tell your plant is unhealthy if you notice reddish chlorotic blotches on its leaves. Additionally, there are instances where the leaf tips are scorched. And what about that? There are instances where you may see that leaves have each of these qualities at the same time. The plant will undoubtedly appear unpleasant while it is still alive.

2. Death of growing points

Growing spots are the regions where new cells form. The tips of the roots and stems are two examples of growth points. Branch buds may also be regarded as developing points.
This indicates that the plant has stopped growing. It would be unable to produce new leaves, or even worse, the plant would stop producing fruit.

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3. Premature shedding

In rare instances, plants begin to lose their buds and blooms before they are fully developed.
You can’t make the most of the chance to have fully developed flowers blooming in your garden, which is such a waste.
Even if you are only discussing non-flowering plants, you still want to see the whole thing develop to its maximum potential.

4. Bitter pit

When the fruit of the plant develops dark blotches on the skin, this indicates a disease. This implies that the cells in those areas are dead, which accounts for the change in color.

5. Reduced shelf life

The effect is on the fruit’s shelf life, assuming there are no obvious physical signs of calcium deficiency.
When fruits lack calcium, which reduces their normal shelf life to a week, they may begin to rot within a few days.

The Cause Of Calcium Deficiency in Plants

We now understand that calcium is necessary for plants to stay healthy. However, how can a calcium deficit develop? When do plants start to lack calcium?

Type of soil

Sometimes, it’s simply a matter of the soil you have. It is well known that sandy or coarse soils contain less calcium.

Uneven soil moisture

The regional climate is another factor contributing to the shortage of calcium. It is likely that the soil moisture will be inconsistent if your area is known for its erratic weather.
The same holds true for warm areas. The soil will become dry if it is too hot. It could result in calcium deficiency if you don’t care for it by giving it enough water.

Overuse of fertilizer

Fertilizers are known to be excellent for gardening. To much of a good thing, though, may be harmful, just like with anything else in life. That is precisely the case with excessive fertilizer use.

Here’s the situation, Nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium are components of chemical fertilizers; these three elements are collectively referred to as NPK based on their respective chemical symbols. The nitrogen in fertilizer causes the soil to become acidic when applied in excess. Keep in mind that acidic soil may make it difficult for water to penetrate.
Meanwhile, too much phosphorus may result in the formation of calcium insoluble forms.

The fact that this issue can be resolved is a plus. You must act right away if you see the initial indications of calcium inadequacy (the symptoms listed above).

Fixing Of Calcium Deficiency in Plants

If your plants are deficient in calcium, it stands to reason that adding calcium will help. But how exactly do you do that? Let’s start by discussing the calcium-containing items that you could utilize in your garden:

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Do you know anyone who uses lime on their lawn? This is because lime can treat your soil’s calcium issue, which also affects your plants.
Two varieties of lime exist:

  • Calcitic lime
  • Dolomitic lime

High calcium carbonate content limestone makes up calcitic lime. It’s a substance that’s frequently used to increase the pH of soil. Additionally, it enriches the soil with calcium, but only after you have first checked the pH level.
You don’t want the pH to rise excessively. Therefore, if calcitic lime is not required, do not add it.
There is calcium carbonate in dolomitic lime. Magnesium is a bonus ingredient that is also present.


This is a calcium and sulfur-containing mineral mixture.

Bone meal

This product is a powder made from broken-down bones. It gives plants calcium and phosphorus.

Calcium EDTA

This product, which is water soluble, is in charge of retaining calcium molecules so that the critical mineral can be effectively distributed to plants.

Here’s a crucial reminder: You must evaluate your soil before adding calcium to it for your plants so that you can properly supply the greatest answer.
The truth is that it’s possible that there is adequate calcium in the soil, but for a variety of reasons, it isn’t getting to the plants.
In other words, you will discover that there may be other causes for plants not absorbing calcium when you test the soil and find that there is enough calcium there. The additional options are as follows:

Irrigation issues

Perhaps the reason the plants aren’t getting enough calcium is that they don’t have access to water.
You can have problems with your irrigation system. Another possibility is that you are not giving plants enough water. You must make sure to maintain the soil moist for your plants if you live in a tropical or warm area.

Low pH level

Again, acidic soil prevents calcium from penetrating the soil effectively and from reaching the plants.
For plants, the ideal pH range is between 5.5 and 6. Make careful to boost it as necessary if it falls below that.


We said that if it’s hot, the soil will be overly dry and prevent the plant from absorbing calcium. Another obstacle is the cold environment, which will result in low transpiration rates.

Adding calcium

After assessing the soil and identifying the issue that resulted in calcium deficiency in plants, you can now select the most effective method of adding the mineral. After selecting your decision, be sure to read the directions on how to apply calcium to the soil correctly. And keep in mind that you must add the proper quantity.


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About TINOLOADED 29 Articles
TINOLOADED is an online platform where the founder "Ali Kenneth" shares to you "Garden Care Made Easy" tips which helps you Keep Your Garden Healthy and Beautiful All Year Round. Garden Equipment For Houseplants, Landscaping, etc.

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