The Q&A Archives: Yellow Leaves On Vegetables

Question: The bottom leaves on my bell pepper and eggplants are turning yellow and dropping off. Is this a disease or could it be a symptom of too much or too little water? The entire area is mulched with newspaper and pine bark. Also,
The pepper leaves are beginning to get a few brown spots and some blossom end rot.

Answer: Both too much or too little water could cause the older leaves to yellow. The fact that blossom end rot is also occurring this late in the season is a pretty good indicator that water problems are involved.

Low nitrogen can also cause older leaves to yellow. If a disease were involved, I would expect to see quite a few leaf spots developing before the leaves yellow and drop.

Bacterial diseases are more often a problem than are fungal diseases on peppers in the south. The spots from a bacterial infection tend to be angular while fungal spots tend to be rounder with a yellow halo around them.

Your mulching practices are a great idea. Try to keep water levels more even. Not too soggy or too dry. For bacterial spots, the lowest toxicity solution for peppers is probably a copper based spray.

Good luck with your peppers!

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