Salt Injury

Excessive soluble salts

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Excess salinity due to poor water quality or improper fertility can stunt plants and in severe cases, kill them. Plants affected by high salt concentrations often appear dark green in the early stages, but rapidly develop marginal yellowing and necrosis of older leaves.

Careful attention to fertilization and watering is important in greenhouse and container grown crops. Watering container grown plants to runoff will prevent salt buildup. Little can be done in a field situation where water quality is poor; some beneficial effects of planting on the sides of beds (as opposed to the top or center where the salt tends to build up because of the wicking effect) have been reported.

The information given herein is for educational purposes only. Reference to commercial products or trade names is made with the understanding that no discrimination is intended and no endorsement by the Texas AgriLife Extension Service is implied.

Educational programs of the Texas AgriLife Extension Service are open to all people without regard to race, color, sex, disability, religion, age, or national origin.

Publication Revised July 2009

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