The Truth About Your Tomato Leaves Turning Yellow

Written by Naomi Meza


Posted on April 19 2024

Tomatoes are a staple in many home gardens, prized for their versatility and flavor.

However, one common issue that can plague tomato growers is the dreaded yellowing of leaves.

If you've ever wondered, "Why are my tomato plants turning yellow?" you're not alone.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the reasons behind this phenomenon and provide actionable solutions to help your tomato plants thrive.


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Why Are My Tomato Plants Turning Yellow?

yellow tomato plant leaves

Tomato leaf yellowing can be caused by various factors, ranging from nutrient deficiencies to environmental stressors.

One of the primary culprits is nutrient deficiency, particularly nitrogen, magnesium, or iron.

Poor soil quality, overwatering, or underwatering can also contribute to yellowing leaves.

Additionally, diseases such as early blight and fusarium wilt can manifest as yellow spots on tomato plants.


Related Post: The Difference Between Fungal and Bacterial Infections in Your Plants


What Causes Yellow Leaves on Tomato Plants?

tomato plant with yellow leaves

Yellow leaves on tomato plants can be attributed to several factors:

  1. Nutrient deficiencies: Lack of essential nutrients like nitrogen, magnesium, or iron can cause leaves to turn yellow. This deficiency often manifests as chlorosis, where the leaves lose their green color due to insufficient chlorophyll production.

  2. Overwatering or underwatering: Inconsistent watering practices can stress the plants, leading to yellowing of leaves. Overwatering can drown the roots and deprive them of oxygen, while underwatering can result in dehydration and nutrient uptake issues.

  3. Environmental stress: Extreme temperatures, poor soil drainage, and improper sunlight exposure can stress tomato plants, causing their leaves to turn yellow.

  4. Pests and diseases: Certain pests, such as aphids and whiteflies, can suck the sap from tomato plants, causing damage and yellowing of leaves. Diseases like early blight and fusarium wilt can also lead to yellow spots on tomato leaves.


4 reasons why tomato leaves are turning yellow


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What Do Yellow Tomato Leaves With Brown Spots Indicate?

tomato leaf with brown spots bacterial disease

Yellow tomato leaves with brown spots are often a sign of fungal or bacterial diseases, such as early blight or septoria leaf spot.

These diseases typically start as small, dark spots on the leaves, which gradually enlarge and turn yellow or brown.

Proper sanitation, including removing infected leaves and practicing crop rotation, can help prevent the spread of these diseases.


Related Post: How to Save Tomato Seeds From Fresh Tomatoes


How Do You Fix Yellow Leaves on Tomato Plants?

yellowing tomato plant

To address yellow leaves on tomato plants, consider the following remedies:

  1. Nutrient supplementation: Use a balanced fertilizer to provide essential nutrients to the plants. Our Tomato Fertilizer 4-18-38 Plus Micronutrients is an excellent choice, as it contains a precise blend of nutrients tailored to meet the needs of tomato plants.

  2. Adjust watering practices: Ensure that the plants receive adequate but not excessive water. Monitor soil moisture levels and water deeply and infrequently to promote healthy root growth.

  3. Improve soil drainage: Amend the soil with organic matter to improve drainage and prevent waterlogging, which can contribute to root rot and yellowing of leaves.

  4. Control pests and diseases: Inspect the plants regularly for signs of pest infestation or disease. Use natural or organic pest control methods whenever possible, and promptly remove infected plant material to prevent the spread of disease.


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Can Yellow Tomato Leaves Turn Green Again?

In some cases, yellow tomato leaves can turn green again with proper care and nutrient supplementation.

However, severely damaged or diseased leaves may not recover fully and may need to be pruned to encourage new growth.

Should I Cut Yellow Leaves Off My Tomato Plant?

pruning tomato plants

While it may be tempting to remove yellow leaves from tomato plants, it's essential to assess the underlying cause first.

If the yellowing is due to nutrient deficiency or environmental stress, addressing these issues should take precedence.

However, if the leaves are severely damaged or diseased, removing them can help prevent the spread of disease and promote overall plant health.


Related Post: Easy Tips to Fertilize Your Tomatoes for Better Yields


What Fertilizer is Good for Yellow Tomato Leaves?

greenway biotech tomato fertilizer 4-18-38

Choosing the right fertilizer is crucial for addressing yellow leaves on tomato plants.

Tomato Fertilizer 4-18-38 Plus Micronutrients is an excellent option for several reasons:

  1. Balanced nutrient formulation: This fertilizer contains a precise blend of essential nutrients, including nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and micronutrients like magnesium and iron, to support healthy plant growth and development.

  2. Water-soluble formula: The water-soluble formulation of Greenway Biotech Tomato Fertilizer allows for easy nutrient uptake by the plants, ensuring quick and efficient absorption.

  3. Micronutrient supplementation: In addition to major nutrients, this fertilizer provides essential micronutrients that are often lacking in soil, such as magnesium, iron, and zinc, which are vital for preventing yellowing of leaves and promoting overall plant health.


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When to Fertilize Tomato Plants?

Fertilizing tomato plants

It's important to fertilize tomato plants at the right time to maximize their growth and productivity.

Begin fertilizing when the plants start to flower, and continue every four to six weeks throughout the growing season.

Avoid over-fertilizing, as this can lead to nutrient imbalances and other issues.


Yellow leaves on tomato plants can be a concerning sight for gardeners, but with proper care and attention, this issue can be remedied.

By addressing nutrient deficiencies, improving soil quality, and practicing good gardening practices, you can ensure that your tomato plants remain healthy and productive.

Consider using Tomato Fertilizer 4-18-38 Plus Micronutrients to provide your plants with the essential nutrients they need to thrive and enjoy a bountiful harvest.



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