seedlings turning white

filixMarch 3, 2008

I have sixteen sweet peas that I started in pure turface a month ago. They were doing fine but I noticed some leaves turning white. And the plants look more yellow now. I did some reserch and read it could be, too much sun, too much water, too cold, too much fertilizer, or not enough fertilizer. I have to laugh at myself, just when I think I'm starting to get a handle on things I go and prove myself a novice that I am. :( I waited untill they had six leaves before I added fertilizer. I put some dolomite lime on them. Very small amount, like puting salt on food. And have been feeding them with a very weak solution of dynagrow and chelated Iron mixed in rain water. I used a eye dropper to add fert. I know sweet peas like cold and I put them out as much as I can. Temp is always above freezing. They do get alot of sun either in my cold frame "when it's too cold out" or just outside. my thinking is to give them as much sun as I can while it's out. Sometimes we get two or three coudy days in a row.

I could be watering them too much. I wait until top is dry, then I mist with spray bottle, and try to see some coming out the bottom.

Maybe it's the dyna-grow 7-9-5. maybe I should be useing MG. The dynagrow has all trace elements. Thought that would be good.

I know the seed has nutients to give the plant a good start. But when the plant is sitting in pure turface, it's getting nothing.

I like the idea of useing turface for seeds because it drains so well. So helps prevent damping off.

maybe the chelated Iron is a bad Idea. I know it's not the small amount of dolomite lime. Because I have eight plants in yogurt cups, and eight in one big pot that I didn't add lime to. filix

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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I'm not sure if your plants are salvageable or not, you may want to start another batch now, in case what you're nurturing fails. The Dyna-Gro is a good fertilizer w/o your addition of the dolomite & Fe chelate. It already has ample Ca and Mg, compared to the amount of N. The only thing I can say I don't care for is that it has much more P than is necessary, but that shouldn't be a problem for starting seeds. You could have started fertilizing right from the first signs of germination, or at least from the first set of true leaves. (see below)

From what you said, it's not likely that it's sunburn unless you just took the plants outdoors and plopped them into the frame after starting them indoors, even though the symptoms may match. Let us know if there's any real reason you do suspect sunburn.

I would stop the misting & just water the soil when it is nearly dry. To eliminate the chance of root issues, I would even risk allowing the plants to exhibit the first signs of wilt to get a good measure of how long you should go between waterings. If you water thoroughly each time you do water, you can fertilize at each watering at 1/4 recommended strength w/o worrying about over-fertilizing.


    Bookmark   March 3, 2008 at 8:27PM
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Thanks Al. Sorry if you have to hold my hand through my projects. Maybe when I misted the whole plant got wet and sun scald. Letting things dry out makes perfect sence. I bet even when turface appears to be dry it has enough moisture. filix

    Bookmark   March 3, 2008 at 8:52PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

As the water evaporates from the leaves, it leaves a concentration of fertilizer salts on the leaves that can/will pull water from leaves like salt pulls water from ham or bacon.


    Bookmark   March 4, 2008 at 12:01AM
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