my 4 month old Lychee seedling needs help!

I started growing the Lychee tree in regular soil, and after about 2 months i desided that i wanted to try to grow it hydroponically.

Ever since its first leaves, the tips of the leaves are turning slowly brown and crispy. It grows under a growing light at room temperature. New leaves are coming and it seem to be having it great except for the leaves turning brown.

I included some pictures for you to look at. Please help me! I really love my plant and dont want to lose it! And it seems that the leaves are also turning a lighter shade of green almost yellow-ish color. What does it mean!!?? :O

Here is a look at the plant

And here you can see what i am talking about

  • This looks like nutrient burn. How much nitrogen is it getting?
    – user10810
    Commented Jun 19, 2017 at 0:13
  • Possibly potassium deficiency. What are you using for fertilizer? What is the formulation? Could also be chlorine and fluoride in tap water. Are you using city water? Doesn't look bad at all. Your plant is just trying to tell you what it needs before it does become a problem. How long have you been doing hydroponics?
    – stormy
    Commented Jun 19, 2017 at 17:34
  • Is it in flowing water or still water? Do you oxygenate the water? Are the roots ok?
    – Alina
    Commented Sep 10, 2017 at 14:35
  • 1
    @Alina judging by the background, this is the hydroponics set "Växer" from IKEA and this has still water without any pump mechanism.
    – Stephie
    Commented Sep 10, 2017 at 18:59
  • 1
    Then I guess it's root asphyxiation. When the roots stay in water they are deprived of oxygen and they die. The symptoms are browning and falling of the leaves, starting at the tip. This is why in hydroponics you have to provide aeration to the roots.
    – Alina
    Commented Sep 11, 2017 at 8:53

1 Answer 1


Leaf tip burn like that, when your feeding it hydroponically, Is 99% of the time going to be a nutrient issue. It could also be a ph issue, but its more likely your overfeeding it, causing a nutrient lock. Thats why your also seeing signs of deficiency, even though its over fed. It doesn't matter what line of nutes your using, all companys recommended dosage, is always going to be high, a normal feeding for most plants is most of the time a little over half of what they recomend. In your case, id flush the medium with ph'ed water, and I mean FLUSH IT!!. Let it dry out, not completely (never let it dry out completely) but when it looks like it needs water again, give it a 1/4 dose if what you were feeding it, along with a little silica, about 1/4 of what the silicas recommended dose is too. Then work your way up to 1/2 and stay there for awhile and see how it looks, then increase or decrease. Make sure to ph it correctly too. Also, im sure your aware, but just in case your not, those damaged leaves, will not get better. Look to new growth to judge how its doing. Also, be sure to correct your feeding if your giving it too much of something. Everything has to be in the right ratios. Calcium should be at a 7 to 1 ratio with magnesium. Potassium should be at a certin ratio (the #'s escape me at the moment, I wanna sat 12 for some reason) to calcium, and so on, and so on. Make sure all of your nutes, and any addatives you might be using, aren't throwing your ratios off. Also be aware that a PH problom, can look like anything, and certain nutrients are better absorbed, and some are only absorbed a certain ph levels.

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