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A1 Gritty Mix and Cactus Seed Propagation questions

Posted by Sharpy.808 9b Florida (My Page) on
Tue, Apr 24, 12 at 12:39

Hello folks, new to the forums and have a few questions.

I have done a large amount of research on this subject, but still have some cloudy areas I'm not quite sure about. Also did some searching here and didn't have any luck finding a thread on this subject. (It's probably out there I just didn't find it)

So here is the process I have so far. Combined information from several sources.


Seedling mix - 50/50 Turface/Grit (granite or sand) couple inches deep, covered with 1/8" layer of turface fines.

Thoroughly water the 50/50 first then add the layer of fines. Mist with water bottle to wet the fine layer.

Sprinkle seeds on top. Cover the seeds with a super fine layer, or optionally leave them on the surface.

Place container in zip lock bag and put into foil lined enclosure with lighting 2-4 inches above containers. And maintain ~80F.

Once germinated, slowly open the bag over a 1 week period to introduce the seedlings to the atmosphere.

Once in open air, maintain the moisture till about the 5 month age range. During this time still under fluorescent light, we are fertilizing with foliage-pro 9-3-6 at 1/4 strength working up to 1/2 strength, every other week.

Then start the hardening process.


Sound plan? Good/Bad? Anything that appears incorrect is what I'm looking to find out.

Do you sterilize the gritty mix in a microwave or is this not necessary?

All the seeds I will be starting are varieties of Astrophytum - Asterias and Myriostigma.
I can maintain a higher temperature if required.

Sorry for the long post folks, but this is has been driving me crazy and wanted to just get it all out in one shot :P

Thanks a lot for any input

Doug


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: A1 Gritty Mix and Cactus Seed Propagation questions

Once germinated, slowly open the bag over a 1 week period to introduce the seedlings to the atmosphere.

Don't cover the seeds. Once germination begins immediately remove the bag completely. Lighting 2" and no more unless they show signs of scorch. No need to sterilize the mix. Maintaining the proper moisture levels will be your biggest issue as the common tendency is to way over-water.

You don't mention container type, size or depth?

Dave


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RE: A1 Gritty Mix and Cactus Seed Propagation questions

Thanks for the input Dave.

Sorry I left out the container info. Planning on using 2.5" dia. by 2.25" deep plastic.

15-20 seeds per container. Unless that is going to be to overcrowded? Only reason I came to that number is someone had mentioned they would put 20-30 in a 2.5" square container.

Doug


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RE: A1 Gritty Mix and Cactus Seed Propagation questions

15-20 seeds per container. Unless that is going to be to overcrowded?

No, that is a good way to grow as it effectively uses the space under the lights. But you have to be comfortable with doing lots of transplanting to individual cells within a short time as they can't all remain in the 1 cell for any length of time. How soon will vary from variety to variety.

Dave


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RE: A1 Gritty Mix and Cactus Seed Propagation questions

Ok great :)

Had 2 other questions pop into my mind. Just to get to the smaller details.

1. Say we have 15 seeds in a cell. 2 of 15 pop on the first day. Are we leaving the bag sealed, for say a week? To see who else comes up. Or do we open at the start and the rest will follow?

2. Concerning the fertilizer. What type of delivery system do you recommend? Spray bottle - or drip in to not get it on the seedlings. Not sure if the seedlings can handle foliage type feedings.

And thanks a lot for the input. I sowed 20 Porodia Haselbergii about a hour ago on the GM. I got about 1000 seeds from mine this year, so using them for experiments to weed out some potential future problems.

Thanks again

Doug


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RE: A1 Gritty Mix and Cactus Seed Propagation questions

Ugh I wish you could edit previous posts.

"But you have to be comfortable with doing lots of transplanting to individual cells within a short time as they can't all remain in the 1 cell for any length of time. How soon will vary from variety to variety."

The criteria for when to transplant, will be about the point that they come near to touching each other and/or overcrowding correct?

Doug


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