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I'm a newbie and my seedlings are dying... Any help? (Pictures)

Posted by dyancuevas Philippines (My Page) on
Tue, Feb 1, 11 at 20:58

Hi everyone!

I just started container/balcony gardening and it's been pretty fulfilling so far. I have 7 pots of different kinds of seedlings and a few herbs. :)

Lately, I noticed my sungold sunflower seedlings starting to yellow and droop. I thought it might be damping off but their stems seem okay. I removed two of them and the roots looked fine. Here's a picture (the small seedling to the right is a zinnia):

Here are some pictures of the remaining sungold seedlings that I left in the pot:

Also, my zinnia seedlings (no true leaves yet) have started to droop a bit, but they're still as green as can be.

I kinda sprayed them with water a couple of times before and added more water to the bottom of their pots a few days ago. The weather here has been really, really cold and wet, if that info helps.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: I'm a newbie and my seedlings are dying... Any help? (Picture

It sounds like the roots are saturated, which will eventually result in a condition called root-rot. This is caused by poor drainage or too much water. The end result is that the roots are unable to draw in nutrients, which will gradually starve the plant.

Be sure to only water when the soil dries out. I water my seedlings once or twice per week at most. I wait until the soil is dry to the touch. I then water deeply, ensuring water runs out of the drainage hole. This seems to keep the plants healthy, and also helps prepare them for similar conditions outdoors.

Finally, never fertilize seedlings until they have developed their fourth set of leaves. The salt content that is present in most commercial fertilizers can burn the roots. If you use a fertile potting medium, fertilization is not needed at the early stages of growth.

RE: I'm a newbie and my seedlings are dying... Any help? (Picture

The necrosis on the end of the leaves, makes me think you have a salt problem in your soil. What soil mix are you using for seed starting? Does it contain fertilizer? Al

RE: I'm a newbie and my seedlings are dying... Any help? (Picture

aquawise: Root rot might be the culprit. I may have left too much water on the pan at the bottom of the pot (I'm using plastic pots).

calistoga: Could it be a salt problem too? I'm currently using soil-less potting mix with slow-release fertilizer. The package doesn't say what kind of fertilizer it is, but they look like little beads that burst when wet.

RE: I'm a newbie and my seedlings are dying... Any help? (Picture

I would not be using fertilizer of any kind on plants that size, and certainly not in a seed starting mix. Al

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