Why do plants not grow and remain stagnant?

Plant growth retardation is one of the most common problems we face in the garden or indoors. Despite care, they do not give new shoots, the leaves do not grow or lose color and turn yellow. And each time it is quite difficult to determine what it causes.

Why don’t plants grow?

It’s nice to see plants growing in the garden and in pots with lush green foliage and blooms. Stunting is one of the most common problems. Very often, growth retardation is associated with the soil in which it is planted.

Plants that grow little are planted in the wrong soil, or at the wrong time. Before planting crops, a professional soil analysis is done so that its properties can be improved.

A neutral environment is favorable for the growth of most horticultural crops. Alkaline soils are quite rare, but seriously interfere with horticulture. The higher the pH, the more difficult it is for plants to absorb water from the soil on dry days.
They need to be improved, planted certain crops that can grow in such difficult conditions. Leaf and coniferous litter can gradually improve the acidity of the soil.

Leaf litter

Vegetable crops are difficult to grow on alkaline soils. Their growth will be weak, fruiting – poor. Most vegetables are suitable for slightly acidic or neutral soils.

  • If vegetables, flowers, trees in the garden remain stagnant after planting, then there is undoubtedly a problem with the environment in which they were placed.
  • On calcareous soils poor in nutrients.
  • Acidic soils with low pH. Due to these problems, some plant species do not grow due to reduced nutrient uptake.
  • In winter, some plants stop growing when they hibernate.
  • Plants do not grow when attacked by insects and diseases, which creates problems in their growth.
  • When irrigation water is not enough, mainly during the summer season.

Planting in poor quality soil is the main cause of stunted growth, especially in the early days.

Poor soil quality. How to improve the soil?

One of the most common reasons plants stop growing is when the soil is deficient in nutrients.


If you do not add fertilizer, the roots will not receive enough of the necessary substances, and the plant, as a rule, slows down growth, does not produce new shoots and foliage.

  • Enriched with manure or compost, increasing the nutrient content.
  • For planting plants in pots, choose high-quality potting soil, enriched with nutrients, with good drainage.
  • Avoid fertilization at very high and low temperatures, as plants cannot absorb them.
  • Apply fertilizer after watering.
  • Liquid fertilizers are absorbed immediately, they are applied quite often, but in small quantities so as not to burn the roots.

Growth is usually stopped due to a lack of nitrogen. Nitrogen provides lush vegetation, and intense green leaves. Phosphorus contributes to the formation of roots, iron and magnesium are necessary for photosynthesis and leaf greening. It is impossible to bring in fresh manure, it can burn a young plant, in particular, its roots. Only completely rotted can be added to the planting pit.

Plants will not develop if watered with poor quality water. Due to the high salt content in the water, they cannot absorb nutrients and grow.

If you plant plants in soil with poor drainage, the roots will have a lot of problems for proper development. In cases of overwatering, or when water is not removed from the ground and floods the soil, the root system suffocates and growth stops.

For better moisture retention and soil ventilation, materials such as perlite can be used to improve soil drainage. In pots without holes, indoor flowers get stuck due to excess moisture.

How to improve watering? Plants are watered depending on the species, their growth, the soil in which they are planted, and climatic conditions.

 Watering garden plants

On hot days, it is important that the soil retains water for as long as possible. Therefore, evaporation should be as small as possible. Covering the surface of the bed with mulch will retain moisture. Suitable materials are special mulching fibers, as well as grass or straw.

The best time to water plants is early morning or late evening. The water will not evaporate t quickly, and the soil will absorb water better. Water directly into the root zone. If watered in the scorching sun, the drops on the leaves act like magnifying glasses, and there is a great risk that the leaves will burn.

Late planting

One of the reasons for stunting plant growth is untimely planting. In early spring, if there is a large difference between day and night temperatures, temperature fluctuations significantly stop plant growth.

Note! Plants should not be planted in fresh, but in advance prepared holes. During spring planting, pits and soil are prepared from autumn, during autumn – a month before planting a seedling, and during summer – 2-3 weeks.

In the summer season, when the temperature is high, it is difficult for the plants and they will grow slowly. Strong winds can cause significant problems in the root system, gradual development in young plants.

When is the right time to plant? Ornamental and aromatic plants are planted in the spring, after the winter frosts have passed, or in early autumn after the high summer temperatures.

Fruit trees from the nursery, rooted in pots, are planted in the spring, after the winter frosts have passed. You can also plant plants with bare root systems before winter, before frost sets in.

How to protect plants?

The appearance of insects and diseases creates problems in plant growth. In order to detect any diseases and insect infestation in time, they are often checked. This makes it possible to fight in the early stages of infection. To prevent diseases and insects, you can use homemade preparations: green soap, baking soda, vinegar, cayenne pepper, ash and cinnamon.

Note! One of the reasons a plant may stop growing is because it doesn’t have enough space.

Flowers do not grow in a pot if they have developed a dense root system. In these cases, it is necessary to transplant them into a larger pot.

 Transfer of indoor flowers

In this way, plants will be able to absorb water and essential nutrients through the root to develop rich foliage.

How can you speed up the growth of a plant? Attention should be paid to the requirements that plants need for normal life. In most cases, this is light, water, heat and nutrients – or an excess of them.

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