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Deficiency symptoms of nutrients and their remedies in Cucumber






Lighter green or yellow coloured leaves (first evident in older leaves) - some plants eg. Berries can develop red or orange colours

stunted growth

lower protein levels in pasture and grain

Nitrogen deficiency symptoms begin as pale green leaves, often smaller than normal; and stunted, weak shoot growth

Urea contains 46% Nitrogen.

Top dressing with inorganic nitrogen fertilizer @10-20 Kg N/ha.

Foliar spray of nitrogen fertilizers @ 0.5% N.


Phosphorus deficiency symptoms begin with reduced growth with short, thin shoots. Leaves are small, and defoliation follows starting with the lower leaves.

Correct soil pH by adding adjuvants.

Apply p 205 @ 40-50 kg/ha as single or tripl ( phosphate.

Spray with 1-2% solutiol) of triple super phosph;


Potassium deficiencies are first characterized by reduced growth, weak stems, and shoot die-back. Early symptoms may be difficult to distinguish. Leaf symptoms include dull bluish-green discolorations, particularly in the interveinal areas of the leaves, dull, general chlorosis particularly at the leaf tips and margins; then tip burning and marginal scorch on the older leaves with the leaves curling under or upwards

Normally, about 50 kg K2O/ha will be adequate for the soil deficient in potassium.

Potassium may be supplied regularly in the form of potassium sulphate.



Calcium deficiency symptoms appear initially on the young leaves and the shoot apex. New leaves are distorted with hooked tips and curled margins, which are irregular and may show brown scorching or spotting. Calcium deficiency can also cause roots of the plants to become stunted, translucent, and bulbous with dead tips.


Calcium deficiency can be corrected by liming the soil in the appropriate quantity.

Apply calcium containing fertilizers like gypsum or chelates etc.

Calcium Chelate 1 - 4%



Magnesium deficiency symptoms begin with chlorosis, sometimes with red or orange coloration on the oldest leaves. As symptoms progress the older leaves shrivel and drop, the veins on the remaining leaves stay green and the interveinal areas have an orange chlorotic mottle. Growth can be much reduced.

Spray of foliage with 1% MgSO4 solution to correct the deficiency.



Symptoms of Sulfur deficiency are much like those caused by Nitrogen: reduced leaf size, stunted growth, chlorosis, orange to purplish pigmentation and delayed maturity

Sulphur deficiency can be corrected by applying fertilizers containing sulphur like Ammonium sulphate, Sulphate of Potash.

Ammonium Sulphate 24%
Single Super Phosphate 12%
Paramphos 15%



A deficiency of Iron causes a decrease in the size of chloroplasts, reduced chlorophyll and reduced photosynthesis. Symptoms include yellow or white chlorosis between green veins on younger leaves and poor vigor leading to death of the shoot tips. These symptoms are most serious in poorly drained, alkaline soils.

Apply 10 kg/ha iron sulphate through soil; spray 0.5% FeSO4 + 0.1%citric acid; add 0.2% urea in the spray solution for better results



Symptoms of Manganese deficiency start as interveinal mottled chlorosis, the leaves become yellow and then develop small necrotic lesions in the most chlorotic areas. Reduced leave size and crimping of leaf margins are also possible symptoms

Apply 10 kg/ha manganese sulphate through soil; foliar application @ 0.12 kg Mn/ha is useful



Copper deficiency occurs in sandy soils of the Southwest. Symptoms are variable but generally consist of a lack of vigor, smaller than normal leaves, and a bluish-green cast to the leaves.


Small amount of soil applied CuSO4 is able to correct the copper (Cu) deficiency on calcareous soils.

Apply 2 - 6 kg Cu / ha as copper sulphate once in 3 - 4 years.


Zinc deficiency symptoms begin with interveinal chlorosis. The first leaves in the spring on trees remain small, the stems fail to elongate and the leaves appear to be in whorls or rosettes.

Apply 15 kg/ha or more Zn through soil; spray 10 kg/ha ZnSO4



Symptoms of Molybdenum deficiency start with the older leaves and progress towards the tip. The first symptom is yellow-green or pale orange interveinal mottling distributed uniformly over the leaf. Marginal wilting, inrolling and cupping follow the chlorosis and flower formation is suppressed


Apply 1 kg/ha ammonium molybdate with NPK fertilizers through soil; spray 200 ppm ammonium molybdate before flowering


Boron deficiency symptoms vary between plants but some general symptoms are injury to plants meristem and actively dividing tissues and death of the apical meristem. This can lead to a bushy plant habit or the death of all buds preventing new growth

Spray 10 kg/ha borax or 0.2% borax through soil; foliar application of 0.1 ppm B


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Please note that this is the opinion of the author and is Not Certified by ICAR or any of its authorised agents.