Sterilization: Cuttings, soil etc

judyj(Z5 CO)July 31, 2014

Was watching a video on Strep propagation where the fellow was sterilizing everything-include the cut leaves. Those he sterilized in bleach (one part to five parts water I believe) and water.

How absolutely necessary is it to sterilize everything? Just trying to understand the ramifications if I don't. The potting mix I use does also contain some Styrofoam balls (not perlite), so I wouldn't be able to microwave or oven bake it to sterilize. Do I need to get a different mix?

Thanks for any insight-
Best,
Judy

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davioletman

Judy, the most important thing you want to sterilize is your cutting tool in between cuts. This is done reduce if not eliminate the transmittal of any virus.
The leaf does not need to be sterilized. I would suggest to dip the cut end of the leaf in plain cinnamon. Cinnamon acts as a fungicide and will help reduce the chance of rot. I do not sterilize my soil and do not believe it is necessary.

Dave

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 7:48PM
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judyj(Z5 CO)

Thanks Dave-
As I'm still a novice here (and I've no problem with sterilizing the cutting tool), what kind of viruses should we be worried about? At some point I'm hoping to propagate to sell, so I'm trying to assimilate it all to create the best possible situation.

Best,
Judy

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 9:32PM
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davioletman

Judy, the good thing about streps is they are more resistant. The virus most associated with streps to my knowledge would be the mosaic virus. I have not heard of many incidences of it happening among my growing friends over the 6 years I have been growing streps. However, better safe than sorry.

Dave

    Bookmark   August 1, 2014 at 1:23AM
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