Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →

Effects of Sodium Bicarbonate on Plant Growth

...
panini with meat & ham with glass of soda image by Nikolay Okhitin from Fotolia.com

Sodium bicarbonate, commonly known as baking soda, is capable of preventing or treating diseases of plants when you use it correctly. Sodium bicarbonate, by itself or in combination with other ingredients, has shown effectiveness in controlling disease and boosting the growth of certain plants, according to the National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service.

Sodium Bicarbonate Knocks Out Fungal Diseases

When plants become the victims of fungal diseases such as powdery mildew, their growth can not only be stunted but they can die if the infection spreads and becomes severe. Powdery mildew appears as a fuzzy or sooty residue on plant leaves: it can be white, gray or black. To treat fungal diseases with baking soda, mix 1 tbsp. baking soda with 4 cups of water and ½ tsp. liquid dish soap. Spray your affected plant with this solution once every two weeks until all signs of the fungal disease are gone.

  • Sodium bicarbonate, commonly known as baking soda, is capable of preventing or treating diseases of plants when you use it correctly.

Acid-Loving Plants Will Benefit

From azaleas to tomatoes, numerous plants require soil that has a higher concentration of acidity than other types of soils, which can be neutral or alkaline. Alkaline soils have a pH reading above 7.0, while acidic soils measure below 6.0. Neutral soils range from 6.0 to 7.0 pH. To keep your acid-loving plants happy and growing to their maximum potential, water them with a solution of baking soda once a month. Mix about 1 tsp. baking soda to each quart of water and then water your plants with it.

Too Much Can Kill Some Plants

Because baking soda is a salt (the “sodium” in the official name tells us this), too much of it can be detrimental to the growth of some plants. When the soil in which a plant grows is too salty, it creates a toxic environment that is detrimental to some plants, such as orchids and tender leafy plants such as lettuce, according to Science Direct. The "California-Arizona Farm Press" reported in 1998 that bicarbonate present in western soils can not only plug drip system emitters, but is also responsible for tying up nutrients such as calcium, which causes lime to form. This condition causes blossom-end rot on tomatoes, tip burn on lettuce, brown pit in apples and interior brown spots in potatoes. It also causes crusting of soil surfaces, which inhibits plants’ ability to break through when they first germinate from seeds.

  • From azaleas to tomatoes, numerous plants require soil that has a higher concentration of acidity than other types of soils, which can be neutral or alkaline.
  • The "California-Arizona Farm Press" reported in 1998 that bicarbonate present in western soils can not only plug drip system emitters, but is also responsible for tying up nutrients such as calcium, which causes lime to form.

Related Articles

Can Gatorade Make Plants Grow Faster?
Can Gatorade Make Plants Grow Faster?
The Effect of Potassium Chloride on Plants
The Effect of Potassium Chloride on Plants
What Are the Causes of Brown on Tomato Plant Leaves?
What Are the Causes of Brown on Tomato Plant Leaves?
Diseases and Pests of Jalapeno Pepper Plants
Diseases and Pests of Jalapeno Pepper Plants
The Effect of Nicotine on Plant Growth
The Effect of Nicotine on Plant Growth
What Chemicals Can Affect the Growth of Plants?
What Chemicals Can Affect the Growth of Plants?
Vitamins & Plant Growth
Vitamins & Plant Growth
Types of Soil Bacteria
Types of Soil Bacteria
Ingredients in Trimec Plus Herbicide
Ingredients in Trimec Plus Herbicide
Miracle-Gro Ingredients
Miracle-Gro Ingredients
The Best Fertilizer for Carrots
The Best Fertilizer for Carrots
What Happens to Roadside Plants When Salt Is Used to Melt Ice on Roads?
What Happens to Roadside Plants When Salt Is Used to...
Principles of Hydroponics
Principles of Hydroponics
The Effect of Carbonated Water on Plants
The Effect of Carbonated Water on Plants
The Effects of Mineral Water on Plants
The Effects of Mineral Water on Plants
Is Knox Gelatin Good for Houseplants?
Is Knox Gelatin Good for Houseplants?
What Minerals Does a Plant Need to Grow?
What Minerals Does a Plant Need to Grow?
Garden Guides
×