University of Florida

Soil pH and Nutrient Availability

When plants are grown in soils with a high or alkaline pH, they can sometimes suffer from repeated nutrient deficiencies, despite how much fertilizer is applied.

This is because nutrients like phosphorous, iron, and manganese are in forms that are unavailable to plants when soil pH is high.

Ixora is a plant that’s widely grown in South Florida, but it often suffers iron or manganese deficiencies due to high soil pH. Ixora grown in high pH soils will continue to show these deficiencies no matter how much fertilizer is added to the soil.

So if you live in an area with a high pH soil, choose plants suited for those conditions. You’ll end up with the right plant in the right place, and avoid overfertilizing.

UF/IFAS Publications

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