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The irony of overwatering

In greenhouse production, interveinal chlorosis of the upper foliage is commonly associated with insufficient iron (Fe) being available to a plant. The most common situation is a Fe deficiency, which is initially observed as a light green coloration of the new upper foliage, progressing to a more pronounced interveinal chlorosis and, finally, in severe cases, total yellowing and bleaching of the foliage. While these symptoms are commonly observed, determining the cause of the disorder requires additional investigation due to the many causes of Fe deficiency. Iron deficiency can be caused by a wide variety of problems ranging from insufficient Fe fertility, high substrate pH, root rot, or overwatering.

Iron chlorosis can be a challenge for growers due to the wide array of causes. Monitoring automated irrigation is crucial to preventing a wide array of problems, including iron chlorosis. Ensuring that automated irrigation is decreased as season weather shifts from the warm summer months to cooler fall temperatures is a crucial step in preventing overwatering. Additionally, for plants that are prone to Fe deficiency due to overwatering, switching to a substrate with better drainage can help prevent oversaturation for extended periods of time.

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