Do your vegetables suffer from calcium deficiency?

I’ve just returned from some vacation days together with my family. While we were out travelling we saw several beautiful and interesting gardens. And as you can imagine, I always get inspired when I get the chance to visit other beautiful gardens.

However, I also saw some gardens that certainly didn’t seem to thrive very well. Now, I know that there can be many reasons why the plants in a garden don’t thrive, but I just read about one cause that many gardeners aren’t aware of – calcium deficiency.

This deficiency is very widespread and it can do a lot of damage to your plants. In fact, in the article on where I read about this problem, the author, Deborah Aldridge, says that this nutrient deficiency is very common in South Florida.

Crushed eggshells can add calcium to your vegetables
Crushed eggshells can add calcium to your vegetables

When your vegetables suffer from calcium deficiency they don’t grow as well as they should do, and they don’t look as healthy either. The deficiency makes it harder for the plant roots to carry calcium to the rest of the plant.

If your vegetables suffer from calcium deficiency the margins of the young leaves typically get a brown color and get curly. These symptoms may also have other causes, so it’s important not to jump to conclusions. However, if you notice that your vegetables also blossom and rot, then it’s very likely that the cause is calcium deficiency. If you notice these symptoms it’s important that you do something about the problem so that your vegetables don’t get too much damaged – and maybe even die. There may be other symptoms, but these are some of the most common indications of calcium deficiency, says Deborah Aldridge.

How to solve the problem

But what can you do about this problem?

In her article Deborah suggests using crushed eggshells to add calcium to your plants. Eggshells are rich on calcium, and it’s an organic and natural way to add calcium to your plants. Just wash and dry the eggshells before you crush them and distribute them around your plants. But if you have a lot of plants, it may be difficult to get enough eggshells to solve the problem. In that case you can use Lime (for acidic soil) or Calcium sulfate dihydrate (for alkaline soil) to supply the calcium need.

You can read the article here:



  • Dsaldridge

    Hi Anette! Thanks so much for mentioning my article in your post. You asked at Examiner about other sources of calcium for plants, and I did find that in olden days, farmers used milk to add calcium to plants. I have heard of milk sprays to treat fungus, but never milk for calcium, but it makes sense. I'm going to look more into this and do an article on ways to use milk in your garden! That should be interesting. Thanks again, and hope you come back soon! I've bookmarked your blog. You can follow me on twitter at or on Facebook at