Help!! There's mold on my soil!

54641210dMay 1, 2013

I planted my seeds about three days ago and today I noticed white fuzz forming on top of the soil. Argh! I watered the soil with chamomile tea days before I planted and I thought that'd take care of the problem. What should I do? The seeds haven't sprouted yet.


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Argh that happened to me, Josette. I suspect it was because I sealed my adenium crib and there was zero air circulation. I sprinkled generously with ceylon cinnamon which killed the green goo within a day. But that batch was a goner by the time I remembered I had seeds incubating somewhere in the room.

A couple of days after applying cinnamon (the odor of that stuff makes my stomach lurch), I got impatient and removed the two seedlings that sprouted and put them in a fresh pot. I dug around for the rest of the seeds, squished three perfectly good ones in an attempt to test if they were still okay, lost three more to the green goo and found two seeds that appeared to still be alright. One of the seeds went into one of the fresh pots. A week later, it was out and is now a plant.

The last seed was sliced so its insides could be examined. Not really like beansprouts or even rice sprouts and not a touch of the blobulous mass of fungal fiesta that overwhelmed its brethren. Curious, that.

There are chemical sprays you can use, but others here will know better. I frankly cant imagine anything more foul than cinnamon.


    Bookmark   May 1, 2013 at 10:07PM
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Hello all,
I find that microwaving the seed soil completely eliminates this problem with no chemicals or strange smells. Its a sad thing to see seedlings fail isn't it, you never know what their potential may have been. Is your sowing mix made from composted green waste? In my region I find that using this mix without heat treatment can produce a fine crop of fungi. Good luck with what you choose.

Brian UK.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2013 at 3:04AM
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I suggest not sowing in soil at all. Adenium seeds need really not that much moisture (compared to quite a few other plants i've germinated), and they really like air and light. I'll post an image later of my last batch of germinated seeds, i suggest using the paper towel method but don't even wrap them up in the towel, just place them on top of it, spray with water and put the whole thing in a cup or container and wrap in foil.
Later on you just remove the shells and put the little sprouts into whichever soil mix.
If you insist on sowing in soil, do not bury them, just make a small channel in the soil and place seeds in, spray and cover pot with foil. But this exposes the seeds to fungus and bacteria much more than the previous method, even if you sterilize soil it will be contaminated the moment you take it out of the oven. Much less that before,but it will not remain sterile unless you're working in a lab enviroment.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2013 at 12:35PM
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I have not used sterilized soil and have never tried the starting of paper towels. I know of many that do, but I like seeding on top of the soil and covering with forestry sand/grit, #1 or #2 granite grit. The grit keeps moisture levels and lets air to reach seed.
I feel that the molds are coming from too wet with high humidity levels.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2013 at 8:31PM
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here are the images i talked about earlier

using a small plastic tray, used for floral arangements and stuff, and a kitchen cloth thingy, synthetic not paper.

and three days later

it wasn't even covered, i just chucked the whole thing in my tiny plastic propagator and closed the lid.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 6:51AM
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Wow...that is great idea..Thank you for sharing your photos.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 7:55AM
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So after reading the first few posts, I decided to take out all the seeds and microwave the soil. Turns out the bottom of the soil was super damp! I guess the container I used didn't have enough holes in it. Well I dried out all of the soil and resowed the seeds. So far, the mold didn't return. I'll be sure not to overwater this time!!

Thanks guys!

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 8:57PM
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