Tomato Seedlings seem to be growing really slowly

nitram0606March 28, 2012

Hi everyone,

New to this forum, but have been doing several types of gardenings for years. This is my first year starting tomatos from seed, but I may be doing something wrong.

Here is a picture of part of my lot that is about 3 weeks old, maybe older, I stupidly didn't write a seed date on these guys.

They seem really small compared to other peoples tomatoes, and I uprooted one to check and the root growth seems minimal. Any input would be great.

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janezee(Sunset 5, 8b, Whidbey WA)

They look great to me. No problems at all.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 7:54AM
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ikea_gw

They look good. Stop uprooting them. :)

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 8:58AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Same discussion came up a week or so back and one of the main reasons for slow growth is over-watering. Try cutting back on your watering for several days and see if they don't kick up.

Dave

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 10:20AM
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Jay5

Glad this question came up.

A side question for me is about the cotyledons.

Mine have started falling off but are still green. I thought they should turn yellow first. I do have other leaves.

Also some of my leaves look wilty and a bit rolled. Some are sort of hanging over and not perked up at attention.
The soil is moist but to me not overly.

I have them about 2 inches under shop lights for 16 hours.

Over watering a likely cause?

And thanks!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 4:36PM
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grow4free

Hard to say if your tomatoes are growing all that slowly. If so, I would bet it is your soil rather than overwatering. They don't grow if it is too heavy.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 4:45PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Over watering a likely cause?

Very much so. It also can cause cotyledons to fall off while still green because the tap root is water-logged.

I grow thousands of tomato plants each year for sale and the thing that retards and/or kills more seedlings than anything else is over-watering. We go through discussions of this topic over and over every year at this time here and consistently over-watering proves to be the cause of the problems.

Everyone does it even when they are absolutely sure they are NOT doing it. It becomes compulsive. If a little is good then more must be better, right? No. When they can be convinced to cut their watering in 1/2 they are always amazed how quickly the plants improve.

Sure plants won't grow if the soil is too heavy but they also won't grow if it is too wet regardless of how heavy it is or isn't because the roots are lacking in air. All the water has forced it out of the soil.

Prove it to yourself. Cut the watering on 1 tray and see how the plants do when compared to those you continue to water as you normally would.

Dave

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 5:04PM
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Jay5

Will do Dave. Thanks VERY much.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2012 at 5:58PM
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