Calcium Deficiency in Potatoes

Symptoms of Calcium Deficiency in Potatoes

As an immobile nutrient in plants, Calcium deficiency appears as browning and dieback of growing tips of roots and leaves. Leaves curl, and margins turn brown with newly emerging leaves sticking together at the margins leaving expanded leaves shredded on their edges. Fruit yield and quality will be reduced with high incidence of blossom-end rot and internal fruit decay.

About Calcium

Calcium contributes to soil fertility by maintaining a favorable soil pH, which in turn is essential for microbial activity as crop residues are converted to organic matter and nutrients are made available to the plant. Soil structure and water holding capacity are also improved with adequate Calcium. Calcium deficiencies are most likely to occur on acidic, sandy soils from which available Calcium has been leached and on strongly acid peat and muck soils where total soil Calcium is low.

Functions of Calcium

  • Aids in cell wall structure
  • Necessary for early root growth
  • Regulates nutrient uptake and movement throughout the plant

Calcium Deficiency is Made Worse By:

  • Acidic conditions
  • High Aluminum