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help with seed starting

Posted by kenkaysea none (My Page) on
Sun, Sep 15, 13 at 8:29

last spring I sowed a lot of seeds.. I used peatmoss vermiculite perlite and I thought I would add a 10 10 10 fertilizer just to kick start any sprouts..nothing came up. Is it possible that the fertilizer killed all my seeds. at one point my greenhouse smelled kind of like sulphur I think.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: help with seed starting

Usually when adding fertilizer to seedlings:
the fertilizer should be very dilute.
Also which seeds were you trying? Some need cold or light in order to germinate.

RE: help with seed starting

What type of seed you were trying to germinate in your greenhouse environment? Was your mix disease and bacteria free?
Try a purchased soiless mix. Fafard and Promix are two names I can think of now but there are others available. A large greenhouse and plant sales Nursery will have a product. Home Depot has a general potting soiless mix also. If you buy the compressed bale for a little under $30.00 you will have lots of pot seed starting mix and plant pot growing medium for a year. I would not use any fertilizer when starting seeds. Later after they have sprouted and have several weeks growth perhaps.
There have been discussions in past years on GardenWeb. Search Seed Starting Mixes. And as said above seeds warmth and light. Some perennials need a winter outdoors or at least a few weeks cold before needing to warm up and germinate usually in good light.

RE: help with seed starting

So many seed starting mediums you can use. Some even use sand and peat mix. No need to fertilze until much later. Seeds are coated with a little something to help get it going plus it has those cotyledons which feed it in the germination stage. once those cotyledon drop off, that is when you can add diluted fertilzers. Too strong fertilizers can kill.

However it's curious that you reported no germination took place. I would have thought maybe a couple seeds did germinate.. but you reported a zero success level. So many factors can affected seed growth. How old are the seeds, were the seeds disease free, do they require cold stratification or nicking (if hard shelled), do they need to be covered. (the tinier the seeds the less the depth., the larger the deeper).

You may want to look into winter sowing to cut on your workload. (seeds are left outdoors in bottles fashioned as mini greenhouses.) no need to keep the seeds lighted. All that. (does not work for annuals like tomato seeds).

Check it out.


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