Infographic: Signs of nutrient deficiency in plants

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Did you know that plants require 16 essential nutrients to grow normally? These 16 nutrients can be classified into three categories: essential nutrients, macronutrients and micronutrients (also known as trace or minor elements):

Essential nutrients

  • Carbon (C)
  • Hydrogen (H)
  • Oxygen (O)

Plants obtain these essential nutrients from water, air and sunlight, to make food for growth.


  • Nitrogen (N)
  • Phosphorus (P)
  • Potassium (K)
  • Sulphur (S)
  • Calcium (Ca)
  • Magnesium (Mg)

These nutrients are required by plants in relatively large amounts.


  • Copper (Cu)
  • Manganese (Mn)
  • Zinc (Zn)
  • Iron (Fe)
  • Boron (B)
  • Molybdenum (Mo)

These nutrients are required by plants in smaller quantities.

Read more about nutrient density restoration here.

Did you know that plants require 16 essential nutrients to grow normally? These 16 nutrients can be classified into three categories.

What is nutrient deficiency?

Plants can suffer from malnutrition if they are not getting what they need. Nutrient deficiency occurs when a plant lacks an essential nutrient required for growth. Without sufficient essential nutrients, plants will not thrive and present various symptoms to express the deficiency.

Nosipho Mbele, junior technical manager at Zylem, has put together this helpful infographic to help you identify common macronutrients and micronutrients that your plants may be lacking. – Nosipho Mbele, Zylem

Application of CRISPR technology in agriculture

The new gene editing technology known as CRISPR (pronounced ‘crisper’ and short for clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats) has been making headlines in the agricultural sector for some time now. This new technology makes gene editing faster, more affordable and more precise as opposed to conventional genetic modification (GM) processes such as cisgenesis and transgenesis.

CRISPR is a powerful tool that could potentially wipe out genetic disease in plants, animals and humans, as well as improve drought resistance and enhance nutrition in crops. But how does it work and how could it be applied in the agricultural industry? Also, will regulations allow it to be applied on a global scale to really reap the benefits this technology could potentially offer the world?

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