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Nitrogen Toxicity CannabisNitrogen Deficiency CannabisNitrogen Deficiency CannabisNitrogen Deficiency Cannabis

Picture 1: Nitrogen Toxicity.
Picture 2,3 &4: Nitrogen Deficiency.

Nitrogen (N) Mobile Element and Macro Element

Nitrogen is a mobile element, meaning it can travel anywhere it’s needed within the plant.

Inside the plant, Nitrogen converts to amino acids, the building blocks for proteins.  These amino acids are then used in forming protoplasm, which is used in cell division.  These amino acids are also utilized in producing necessary enzymes and structural parts of the plant and can become part of the stored proteins in the plant.

Nitrogen serves as the source for the dark green color in the leaves of various crops. This is a result of a high concentration of chlorophyll.  Nitrogen combined with high concentrations of chlorophyll utilizes the sunlight as an energy source to carryout essential plant functions including nutrient uptake.

Deficiency Symptoms
Nitrogen deficiency will usually start on the lower to middle part of the plant, affecting older leaves first; then will work its way up the plant. This is because Nitrogen is a mobile element, and can travel freely around the plant as needed. Yield will be greatly reduced without good amounts of nitrogen in your plants. Unlike a magnesium deficiency, nitrogen deficiency will start from the tips and work its way back to the leaf node. Nitrogen and Magnesium are easy to get confused. If your plants are having a slow growth rate and have yellowing of the leaves, then most likely it’s a nitrogen deficiency. Nitrogen deficiency will also cause shorter, stunted growth, small leaves and thin stems. Towards the middle to end of flowering stages, plants will typically show nitrogen deficiency. This process is completely normal; the plant is naturally yellowing because it’s using stored nutrients in its fan leaves. This actually helps you by getting ready for final flushing and then harvesting. At this point DO NOT use nitrogen to fix the problem. The yellowing leaves will then eventually drop off after the plant is done with them. To fix a nitrogen deficiency is quite simple: for immediate effects, use a bottled nutrient that contains nitrates or ammonium. Stay clear of Urea nitrogen. This is normally used for slow release nitrogen and is used by soil experts to build their own super soil.

Toxicity Symptoms
The plant will have like an overall DARK green look and have delayed maturity. Due to Nitrogen being involved in vegetative growth, to much nitrogen will result in tall plants with weak stems. New growth will be very lively and plant transpiration will be high, but not always. Nitrogen toxicity can be seen when there are very dry conditions, almost a drought, which may show a burning effect. If you give your plants ammonium based nutrients, they may show NH4+ toxicity, which  show smaller plant growth and lesions that occur on stems and roots, and leaf margins that will roll downward. Big fan leaves will have “the claw” look. The tips will point down but the leaves will stay up as if when you bend your fingers downwards. Leaves can be twisted when growing… mainly new growths. Roots will be under developed along with the slowing of flowering. Yields will be decreased, because to much nitrogen in early stages of flowering slows down bud growth. Water uptake is slowing down from the vascular breakdown of the plants as well. Too much potassium and nitrogen will lock out calcium as well.

Nitrogen gets locked out of soil growing at pH levels of 4.0- 5.5.
Nitrogen is absorbed best in soil at a pH level of 6.0-8.0. (Wouldn’t recommend having a pH of over 7.0 in soil) best range to have nitrogen is a pH of 6-7. Anything out of that range will contribute to a nitrogen def.

Hydro and Soil less Mediums
Nitrogen gets locked out of Hydro, Soil less mediums at the levels of 4.5-5.0.
Nitrogen has the best absorption rate at a pH of 5.5 to 8.0
(Wouldn’t recommend having a pH over 6.5 in hydro and soil less mediums.) Best range to have Nitrogen is: 5.0-7.0. Anything out of that range will contribute to a nitrogen def.

To fix Nitrogen deficiency
Avoid excessive ammonium nitrogen, which can interfere with other nutrients. Too much Nitrogen will delay flowering. Plants should be allowed to become N-deficient late in flowering for best flavor. A good solid N-P-K ratio will fix any nitrogen deficiency. Any chemical or organic fertilizers that have Nitrogen in them will fix a nitrogen deficiency., Peters all purpose plant food 20-20-20 is good, Miracle grow All purpose plant food, Miracle grow Tomato plant food, (Only mixing at ½ strength when using chemical nutrients, or it will cause nutrient burn!) as well and blood meal! If you need to give your plants a quick solution to nitrogen and you want to use blood meal, I suggest making it into a tea for faster use, where blood meal is slow acting, but when made into a tea it works quicker! Other sources of nitrogen are dried blood, Cottonseed meal that is slow acting, Insect eating bat guano, which is fast acting. Bone meal which is a gradual absorption when not made into a tea.( also excellent source of phosphorus). Fish Meal Or Fish Emulsion is a good source of nitrogen and is medium acting. Worm castings, which is gradual absorption. Seabird guano, all purpose Millennia Seabird guano, Original Seabird guano All Purpose, Crab shell, which is slow absorption. Fox Farm Grow Big.

To fix Nitrogen Toxicity
Flush the soil with plain water. You need to use2 times as much water as the size of the pot, for example: If you have a 5 gallon pot and need to flush it, you need to use 10 gallons of water to rinse out the soil good enough to get rid of excessive nutrients. Soluble nitrogen (especially nitrate) is the form that’s the most quickly available to the roots, while insoluble N (like urea) first needs to be broken down by microbes in the soil before the roots can absorb it.

To learn more about the different types of Nitrogen (Urea, Nitrate etc) Visit here and here!


Nitrogen fixation is a process by which nitrogen (N2) in the atmosphere is converted into ammonia (NH3). Or simply put, the process in which unusable nitrogen is converted into usable nitrogen.

Mineralization is decomposition or oxidization of the chemical compounds in organic matter into plant-accessible forms.

Immobilization (or demineralization) in soil science is the conversion of inorganic compounds to organic compounds by micro-organisms or plants, by which it is prevented from being accessible to plants.

Ammonification When a plant or animal dies, or an animal expels waste, the initial form of nitrogen is organic. Bacteria, or fungi in some cases, convert the organic nitrogen within the remains back into ammonium (NH4+).

Nitrification is the biological oxidation of ammonia with oxygen, then into ammonium, then into nitrite followed by the oxidation of these nitrites into nitrates.

Denitrification is a process of nitrate reduction that may ultimately produce molecular nitrogen (N2) through a series of intermediate gaseous nitrogen oxide products.

Nitrogen assimilation is the formation of organic nitrogen compounds like amino acids from inorganic nitrogen compounds present in the environment.

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(From Hi to Low in Nitrogen)
urea Urea (46-0-0)- Also known as carbamide, is an organic compound of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and hydrogen, with the formula CON2H4 or (NH2)2CO. Urea is produced commercially from two raw materials, ammonia and carbon dioxide. Large quantities of carbon dioxide are produced during the manufacture of ammonia from coal or from hydrocarbons such as natural gas and petroleum derived raw materials. This allows direct synthesis of urea from these raw materials. Urea has a number of advantages over other nitrogen fertilizers. Urea is safer to ship and handle, it is less corrosive to equipment, it has a higher analysis than any other dry nitrogen fertilizer and it can be used on virtually all crops. Urea can be stored and distributed through conventional systems. It can be applied in many different ways from sophisticated aerial application equipment to a farm spreading urea by hand. Urea is also highly water soluble so it moves readily into the soil. The high analysis means a reduced transportation and application cost per kilogram of nitrogen.
EnviroWise 356 Lawn Nitrogen Booster Fertilizer EnviroWise Lawn Fertilizer Nitrogen Booster (30-0-0)- is the choice of golf course superintendents. It is a complete product with natural occurring humates, complexes and chelating agents with ENZYMATIC and BIO-STIMULANT additives. Lawn Fertilizer Nitrogen Booster 30-0-0 gives your lawn that extra boost for fast, even green-ups. It can be used on all grass types and helps to reduce thatch. The quart foliar sprayer bottle comes ready to attach to your own hose for instant use on your lawn. This is a concentrated agricultural strength fertilizer, which means less is better. The 32-ounce bottle can treat up to 16,000 square feet. Used as directed, you will soon see the difference in your landscape.
Earth Juice Elements Grow Earth Juice Elements Grow (16-0-0)- For use with planting mixes, native soils and as a hydroponic additive. Elements Grow is a high nitrogen formula developed to encourage vigorous stem and leaf growth. May also be used as a growth booster or as part of the Elements Total Solution. Indoor/outdoor plants, soil and hydroponics.
Nitrate of Soda Nitrate of Soda (15-0-0)- A source of nitrogen to stimulate early spring growth, deep green color, as well as stem and leaf growth. Can be applied to lawn areas at the rate 2 lbs. per 100 square feet. For general gardening, apply 1.4 lbs. per 100 square feet and incorporate into the top 4-5 inches of soil. Water thoroughly after application. Repeat applications every 6-8 weeks during the growing season.
Ingredients: 15% Soluble Nitrogen.
Dr Earth Blood Meal Dr. Earth Blood Meal (13-0-0)- is kiln-dried blood meal infused with seven strains of beneficial microbes. An excellent source of organic nitrogen, Dr. Earth Blood Meal contains Pro-Biotic beneficial soil microbes. Promotes growth of all types of plants. Can be used as a fertilizer tea to feed plants. Also helps to repel deer.
espoma blood meal Espoma Dried Blood (12-0-0)- Dried blood is approved for organic gardening. This diversified product selection provides a range of solutions from addressing specific nutrient deficiencies to loosening heavy, clay soil. Comprised of 100 percent organic nutients, these products are pure plant food with no fillers or sludges. They enrich your garden with the best the Earth has to offer. This product weighs 17 pounds. Hard to find products for the avid and environmentally conscious gardener.
Cutting Edge Micro Cutting Edge Solutions Micro (6-0-0)- Micro is comprised of a high quality Nitrogen and Calcium base, fortified with micro nutrients. Micro is to be used throughout the entire growth cycle of a plant, regardless of vegetative or flowering cycles. Micro is highly concentrated and needs to be diluted and mixed first, before adding any other components.
Nature's Nectar Nitrogen Natures Nectar Nitrogen (5-0-0)- is the worlds first all natural certified organic nutrient that is compatible with hydroponics, soil, coco, and drip irrigation. Natures Nectar Nitrogen (5-0-0) has been used in commercial applications for years in some of Canada’s top green houses with excellent results. Guaranteed Minimum Analysis: Nitrogen 5.0% Advantages: * Completely solublized, instantly available source of nitrogen with no sediment * 13% of formula contains 21 free amino acids * Provides nutrition for beneficial bacteria improving conditions of growing medium * Increases photosynthesis for a greener plant.
Grotek Insta Green Grotek InstaGreen (3-0-0)- is a dark greening solution, scientifically formulated to bring plants back to a lush, dark color and vigor. InstaGreen TM will eliminate yellow leaves in seedlings and cuttings. Use InstaGreen TM when plants are stressed due to under-feeding or transplanting until vigor has returned. Best used as a foliar spray in both indoor and outdoor applications.
botanicare cal-mag Botanicare Cal-Mag Plus (2-0-0)- CAL-MAG Plus 2-0-0 is a bio-catalyst for plants. It is a highly beneficial plant nutrient supplement to correct the inherent problem of calcium, magnesium and iron mineral deficiencies found in most soil fertilizers and some hydroponic nutrient liquid concentrated formulas.
B'Cuzz Foliar B’Cuzz Foliar (1-0-0)- The very first OMRI certified foliar spray proven to enhance theperformance of B’Cuzz stimulators in all stages of plant development.The new B’Cuzz Foliar contains all certified organic activators in onebottle (micronutrients, amino acids, cytokinins, vitamins, esters,carbons) and are instantly available when used as a foliar spray.

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