It is completely safe to apply Epsom salt to poinsettias. Micronutrients in this natural mineral can help to get rid of yellow leaves from poinsettias. It also improves plant’s ability to intake macronutrients making it look bushier.
Epsom salt is the best kept secret of gardeners for hundreds of years. This natural mineral is rich in magnesium and sulfur that can contribute in poinsettias plant growth.
Being heavy feeders, Poinsettia plants need to be supplied with essential nutrients regularly. Though Epsom salt isn’t a replacement for fertilizers, it does benefit plants.
However, there are gardeners who claim Epsom salt to be useless and in some cases harm the plant growth.
In this write-up we shall discuss nutritional ability of Epsom salt and the impact it brings to plant growth.
What Happens when you use Epsom Salt on Poinsettias?
Poinsettias are often associated with Christmas, but you can grow them indoors even after the festive season.
During this course, you should provide adequate sunlight, regular watering and enrich the plant with a balanced fertilizer.
However, due to regular watering, potting soil depletes nutrients. Low levels of macronutrients and micronutrients results in yellowing of leaves and slow plant growth.
Initially, old leaves turn yellow and if left unnoticed, even new foliage may experience chlorosis.
Gardening experts state that low level of magnesium is one of the causes of yellowing of leaves. Adding Epsom salt, which has ample of amount of magnesium and sulfate can help to get rid of this deficiency.
Apart from increasing magnesium levels, Epsom salt can also improve poinsettias ability to uptake macronutrients from the soil.
Magnesium, which plays vital role in photosynthesis, can make your foliage green and lush.
- Magnesium present in the Epsom salt contributes in chlorophyll production, giving your poinsettias a lush, vibrant green.
- Whereas, sulfate improves nutrient absorption ability of your plant.
- It is recommended to dilute Epsom salt in gallon of water to use applied to poinsettias.
What Nutrients Do Poinsettias Need?
Poinsettias are heavy feeders!
They need to be fertilized right after planting. Macro and micronutrients in the fertilizer encourages the rapid plant growth.
Proper fertilization is the reason you see those beautiful bracts on poinsettias.
Without essential nutrients, poinsettias won’t look so attractive and gradually the plant loses its vigor.
Like any other plant, poinsettias need nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus. Apart from this, magnesium, sulfate, calcium and molybdenum are some micronutrients that poinsettia plants need.
- Lack of calcium results in weak stems and leaf edge burns.
- Due to molybdenum deficiency, poinsettia may experience marginal necrosis.
- As already mentioned, magnesium deficiency results in chlorosis, yellowing of leaves.
Epsom salt, which is high in magnesium and sulfate, can avoid chlorosis and it also improves plant’s ability to absorb micronutrients from the soil.
Poinsettias thrive on a balanced regimen of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. You can use organic fertilizer, which is slow-releasing fertilizer and is suitable for potted plants.
Nitrogen helps leaves stay lush and green, phosphorus is for those beautiful blooms we all love, and potassium keeps the plant healthy overall.
As mentioned this plant also needs a little calcium, magnesium, and trace elements like iron and manganese.
Along with these nutrients, you should provide plenty of light, and water wisely, and keep them in a warm room but away from drafts.
Is Epsom Salt Good for Poinsettias?
Epsom salt is a natural mineral and it does have elements that can benefit poinsettias.
Repeated growing and watering depletes nutrients from the soil resulting in nutritional deficiency.
Magnesium deficiency is one such reason why poinsettia plant leaves are turning yellow.
Adding Epsom salt to poinsettias can help to recover this deficiency and also improve plant’s ability to intake other nutrients from the soil.
Though it is safe, excess use of Epsom salt can harm your poinsettia plant.
- To avoid danger of over-fertilization, you must test your soil, as the soil pH impacts plant’s ability to absorb nutrients.
- If the soil is acidic, adding Epsom salt won’t help you plant, because Epsom salt is pH neutral.
If you’re sure yellowing of poinsettias leaves is due to magnesium deficiency, then add Epsom salt once in a month.
It provides essential nutrients like magnesium and sulfur, which can promote strong root development, vibrant foliage, and even enhance the plant’s ability to resist certain diseases and pests.
Benefits of Epsom Salt for Poinsettias
Epsom salt has been used to enrich plants for hundreds of years. In some cases, gardeners didn’t notice any significant benefit from this natural mineral.
However, it all depends on the plant, soil, watering frequency and growing season.
One thing is for sure, it has no serious side-effects. So, why not try Epsom salt on poinsettias, as it is a gardener’s secret weapon when it comes to poinsettias.
Also Read: Can poinsettias grow Outside in the Cold?
1. Enhance Photosynthesis
Magnesium is a vital component of the chlorophyll molecule, which plants use for photosynthesis.
A little Epsom salt boost can help your poinsettias process sunlight more efficiently.
2. Greener Foliage
With magnesium playing a crucial role in chlorophyll production, Epsom salt can help keep your poinsettias’ leaves a vibrant green.
3. Enhanced Nutrient Absorption
It can help improve your plants’ uptake of important nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus.
4. Flower Production
Sulfate present in Epsom salt aids in the production of proteins, which can encourage more flowers and bright colors in your poinsettias.
5. Deter Pests
It is also known to deter natural pests from the garden.
Sprinkle a mixture of Epsom salt and water around your plants can help keep away pesky insects like slugs and snails. Plus, it’s safe for use on edible plants.
However, it can’t be replaced with pesticide or fungicide.
6. Improve Vigor
Applying Epsom salt can help to revive stressed out poinsettia plants.
Add 2 tablespoons of Epsom salt with 1 gallon of water and use it to water your plants.
This provides poinsettias with magnesium boost, which can help improve their overall health and vigor.
Next time if you’re struggling with pests or have some wilted plants that need a pick-me-up, remember the power of Epsom salt in your garden.
Note: Moderate use of Epsom salt is the key for successful poinsettias.
How to Apply Epsom Salt for Poinsettia Plants?
Discolored leaf is the first sign of magnesium deficiency; it also denoted low fertility of the poinsettias.
Epsom salt being one of the inexpensive way to add magnesium excluding calcium.
To apply Epsom salt for your poinsettias:
- Add 1 tablespoon of Epsom salt in a gallon of water. This creates a solution that can be easily absorbed by the plant’s roots.
- Pour the solution into the soil around the base of the plant until it is saturated. Be careful not to splash the leaves as this can cause leaf burn.
- Apply Epsom salt once in a month.
As a gardener you should know that Epsom salt is not a substitute fertilizer.
Alternatively, you can also use magnesium nitrate to enrich poinsettias with magnesium and calcium.
Applying Epsom salt to your poinsettias is a quick and easy way to give them the essential nutrients they need for optimal growth.
So, continue with your usual fertilizing schedule for best results.
When to Avoid Poinsettias?
Though Epsom salt is a fantastic addition to your poinsettia care routine, there are instances when it’s best to avoid it.
For example, if your poinsettias are growing in soil that’s already high in magnesium, additional Epsom salt could lead to a nutrient imbalance.
Similarly, if your plants are showing no sign of magnesium deficiency – like curling or yellowing leaves – there’s no need to add it.
Take care of poinsettias with ample amount of light, water and fertilizers.
Epsom salt is safe to use on poinsettias, but first you should confirm that the soil has low levels of magnesium.
There is no reason to add Epsom salt to poinsettias, if it is not showing any symptoms of yellowing.
With a little patience and attention, these beautiful plants can bring a vibrant burst of color into your life, not just during the festive season, but all year round.
And remember, the use of Epsom salt can be a handy tool in your gardening kit, but it’s not a magic bullet.
It is a part of a larger care routine that includes proper watering, feeding, and sun exposure.