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Too Much Miracle Gro: What Happens To Plants And How To Fix

A well-balanced fertilizer is essential for plant health and maturity. It packs vital nutrients to kickstart their growth.

Miracle-Gro is one such family of fertilizer products that is quite popular amongst gardeners.

However, some gardeners in the past have cited their plants getting worse after the application of these products.

Let us see if there is any truth to it. Keep reading!


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What is Miracle-Gro? 

Miracle-Gro is a family of fertilizer products produced by Scotts Miracle-Gro company. The fertilizer encourages the growth of your houseplants, and that’s the reason for its naming.

Otto Stern and Horace Hagedorn launched the Miracle-Gro brand in the 1940s. The brand has grown over the years to offer other beneficial products to gardeners, such as plant seeds, plant food, soil mixes, and soil revitalizers.

The All-Purpose Miracle-Gro fertilizer is one of the brand’s most popular products. According to the company, you can apply the fertilizer to trees, shrubs, vegetables, and flowering plants.

Miracle-Gro Components 

The fertilizer consists of three essential elements; nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Typically, you will find them mixed in the ratio of 15-30-15 for indoor flowers.

However, the ratio will differ depending on the houseplants you grow.


  • Flowers (15-30-15) 
  • Rose food (18-24-16)
  • Tomato fertilizer (18-18-21)
  • Trees and Shrubs (15-10-9)
  • All-Purpose (24-8-16)

Knowing Your Plants Fertilizer Requirements


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The best use case for fertilizer is when your plants suffer from nutritional deficiencies. Look for the symptoms below.

  • A common sign of your indoor plants lacking nitrogen is the yellowing of mature leaves and light green coloration.
  • If you spot green leaves having dark green veins, that’s a sign of potassium deficiency.
  • When the older leaves turn purple at the base with other leaves remaining dull and dark green, that is a signal for phosphorus deficiency.

When such nutritional deficiencies occur, most gardeners wonder how much fertilizer or Miracle-Gro is sufficient to combat them. However, there is no one size fits all approach to it.

The best you can do is to follow the instructions on the label of the product regarding the amounts required for the different plant types.

Miracle-Gro advises applying their fertilizer on a bi-weekly basis which is a safe interval for your plants not to get burned. 

What Happens To Plants When Too Much Miracle-Gro Is Applied? 


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You may be tempted to add more fertilizer than is necessary to your plants, but that doesn’t guarantee fast growth or more flower production.

Can you overfeed plants with Miracle Grow?

The excessive application of Miracle-Gro systematically ends up burning your crops due to their inability to take in water.

This is due to the accumulation of salts present in the product. Too much of it could also lead to the wilting of your plants.

Overfertilization thus serves the opposite effect, decreasing the growth of your plants and making them weak and susceptible to pests and diseases.

Other signs of overfertilization you should observe in your plants include leaf scarcity or smaller than typical leaves, growth of short twigs, dead branch tips, and the need to prune your plant regularly.

Recommended Amount

The recommended amount is a tablespoon of liquid that you need to mix with a given volume of water, which is usually a gallon. This amount is enough for 10 square feet of your indoor garden.

Again always stick to the label instructions.

Sometimes, you may apply excess fertilizer accidentally. This shouldn’t cause you sleepless nights.

The action isn’t going to wipe out your plants immediately. Follow the below-mentioned guide to get rid of excess Miracle-Gro.

How to Fix Excessive Application?


If you have been applying excess Miracle-Gro to your plants, you must now be wondering how to fix the problem?

There are multiple ways to go about this, and we show you how through the steps below. 

1. Remove Miracle-Gro From The Soil Surface

Luckily for you, Miracle-Gro is easy to spot when it’s above the soil surface because of its blue color. Use a small shovel to scoop chunks of soil from the ground surface that contain the blue product.

You should leave no trace behind since it gets watered deeper into the soil and becomes difficult to remove.

Ensure to use gloves if you have sensitive skin.

2. Flush Out The Miracle Product Remnants Using Water 

Removing Miracle-Gro from the soil surface doesn’t get rid of it entirely. Some of the product particles are still beneath the soil surface, and you will need to flush them using water.

If left underneath, they will continue damaging the roots of your houseplant further. You also want to be careful with house plants that have roots sensitive to water.

You don’t want to be solving one problem while creating another. Too much water makes your houseplants susceptible to root rot.

Ideally, for this purpose, let the water run freely through your houseplant for upward of 30 minutes. Do this once and stop watering until your houseplant is sufficiently in need of water.

This helps prevent your houseplant from root rot. Most gardeners prefer using distilled water rather than tap water. 

3. Get Rid of Damaged Leaves and Foliage

By now, most Miracle-Gro should be out of your plant system. And the next place you should focus your efforts is the plant itself.

Check for wilted, burned, or damaged foliage. It’s an indication of the damage due to excessive saltiness and has the potential to spread to other healthy parts.

Sterilize a pruning shear and eliminate all damaged, burned, or diseased plant parts.

4. Propagate Healthy Plant Parts 

Not all pruned parts of your houseplants are to be thrown away. Much of these plant parts have leached out the excessive nutrients by now, which means you could propagate them into newer plants.

Identify an ideal potting soil mix and prepare cuttings for planting. Plant them without fertilizer for now and ensure you water them appropriately.

You could grow healthy plants out of a bunch of pruned plant parts. 

5. Regulate Light Exposure

Too much salt in your plant tissue under sunlight increases the burning effect. To prevent your plant from deteriorating further, watch the light exposure.

To do this right, do not keep your sun-loving plant in the dark but provide it with artificial lighting set at a lower intensity.

Once the plant recovers and resumes its expected growth, you can return it to its usual place. 

Wrap Up 

Miracle-Gro is an all-purpose fertilizer that gardeners use to fast track growth in their houseplants.

The challenge is always using it in the right amounts. Excessive application can burn plants and cause long-term damage.

If you have been having problems with Miracle-Gro, we believe you now have some answers to them. 

The steps above help you correct excessive application, thus enabling you to revive the vigor and health of your garden plants. 

Too Much Miracle Gro: What Happens To Plants And How To Fix

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