Leaf scorch

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For the plant disease, see Bacterial leaf scorch.
"Sun scorch" redirects here. It is not to be confused with Sun scald.

Leaf scorch (also called leaf burn, leaf wilt, and sun scorch) is defined as a browning of plant tissues, including leaf margins and tips, and yellowing or darkening of veins which may lead to eventual wilting and abscission of the leaf.[1]


Leaf scorch can be caused by soil compaction, transplant shock, nutrient deficiency, drought, salt toxicity, and herbicide injury.[1]


Affected plants may sometimes recover through watering and fertilization (if the cause is not over-fertilization). Light pruning may also help to reduce the water-pumping load on the roots and xylem.[2]

In the case of leaf scorch through over-fertilization, recovery may take time, requiring a treatment of a slow leaching process through drip irrigation over 24–48 hours.[2][3]


Reversal of symptoms and damage can be enacted through the following cultural practices:[1]

  • Pruning sprouts and affected areas
  • Avoiding frequent, light waterings which promote unhealthy root systems
  • Watering heavily to promote deep root systems
  • Avoiding over-fertilization

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c [1] Archived September 27, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ a b [2] Archived April 27, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Leaf Scorch of Trees and Shrubs