Best not to plant citrus seeds in Root Riot Cubes

Suzi AKA DesertDanceMay 5, 2013

I heard many good things about the hydroponic Root Riot cubes, and I need about 21 dwarf citrus root stock seedlings for our frontage on our property.

I obtained the seeds, soaked them, then inserted one per cube, kept them sort of moist, sometimes ignoring them, and after a weekend of ignoring, a seedling appeared. Then another. Another! Now there are 4, but the first and strongest seedling developed a twin about 1/3" away from it. They are growing side by side, and I want them both, but I have no clue how to separate them.

I tried tearing one of those cubes in half, and it's like trying to tear a sponge.

What I didn't know is that citrus often have several embryos in one seed. I wish I had planted them in regular potting soil, but that's just hindsight.

Roots are already showing for the seedlings, and I think I will plant the single seedlings directly in ground with their cube where they will grow. The twins will go into potting soil for a month or so until their roots can take a little damage when I separate them.

The cubes worked great for seedlings that I could thin, but no way am I thinning dwarf citrus root stock!! It's hard to come by, and I'm feeling really lucky to even have 5 seedlings. I think others will follow.

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If you planted 21 seeds and got 25 seedling plants, why do you hesitate about clipping off the extra seedlings which you don't need anyway? Al

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 9:10AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

Al, I only have 5 seedling plants, and there is another coming up and maybe they all will, but no guarantees there. I wouldn't hesitate to lose one if all 25 took, but we need 21, so every baby counts and now we have 6 counting the twins.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 2:36PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

Today DH got out his knife, and separated the twins. Actually, I was surprised that they kept their roots straight down and were not co-mingled.

He then cut another root cube in half, jammed it up against each seedling, and back in the rooting chamber they went.

They will survive just fine.

Not so sure about the new twins. They are about 1/32" from each other. If one is big, it will get culled because it's growing next to a true dwarf root stock. And the dwarf stock is the whole reason for seedlings.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 8:38PM
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