Even though the weather has prevented me finishing my winter digging in borders, I did manage to venture into the greenhouse last weekend.

Trying to stay busy I decided to check over my potted plants for pests and diseases. One plant that caught my eye was a hellebore, which I bought bare rooted last autumn.

The foliage is showing signs of either magnesium, potassium or nitrogen deficiency. This could be due to a couple of factors, either the plant is unable to take up nutrients from the compost because of an imbalance of these trace elements, or the compost has simply run out of nutrients to keep the leaves green.

I’m hedging my bets on it being magnesium deficiency, which shows itself as yellowing of the leaf in between the veins.  Yellow leaves with brown edges would be a sign of potassium deficiency. yellowing leaves with a pinkish tinge would indicate nitrogen deficiency .

It is hard at this stage for me to be one hundred per cent sure on the nutrient the plant is lacking so for now, whilst I do some research I am giving the plant a weekly comfrey feed and a foliar spray made up of 20g(0.7oz) of epsom salts in one litre (1/30z per pint) of water until I can pot it on or plant it out when the weather warms up a bit.