Garden help for a newbie

Old 03-22-19, 05:10 AM
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Garden help for a newbie

I thought this year it might be fun to try to grow a small "salsa" garden and some herbs. However, I think I am doing something wrong. So I first put the seeds in a moist coffee filter/baggie until they start sprouting roots. Then I put them in one of those black seed trays, put that in a warm room where they can get some sun, and only water them when the top layer is brown and dry (about twice a week). What then happens is the seedlings start growing and looking strong. But then after growing about an inch or so them seem to fall over, wither, and die. Am I doing something wrong or do you guys have some suggestions?
Old 03-22-19, 05:28 AM
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Are they getting root bound? (container to small for the roots to grow)
Poor growing soil?
Old 03-22-19, 05:36 AM
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I don't think it is root bound because I don't think they get to live long enough for their roots to get that long. I am using a bag of Miracle Grow soil that I bought a few years back. Could that be my problem?
Old 03-22-19, 05:39 AM
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Just a guess, but the fertilizer in the soil you're using may be the culprit. The seedlings are growing too fast and the root system can't support the rapid growth. Again, just a guess. I would start with trying a different soil. Could also be too much or not enough water (some herbs prefer well drained soil) and/or not enough sunlight (herbs require 6 to 7 hours of direct sunlight per day). Planting them outside next to the house helps I hear (shelter from wind and warmth from foundation). I dont have a green thumb and am simply regurgitating what I just read online.
Old 03-22-19, 08:52 AM
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What medium/soil are you using?

It sounds like your plants are not making it out of the seedling stage. That's when the plant is growing off of the nutrients stored in the seed then must transition to getting nutrients from it's roots. It's a time when the plant needs readily available nutrients that are not too strong. Also during that time keep the soil moist. I often cover the starting tray to form a mini greenhouse. Once the plant has produced 3 or 4 leaves and is past the inch high stage then uncover and start letting the top of the soil dry before watering.

A lot also depends on exactly what you are growing. Some plants absolutely don't like to have their roots messed with, especially when sprouting. Try planing your seeds into peat or newspaper pots filled with potting soil. Then when the time comes you can plant the pot and everything right in the ground.
Old 03-27-19, 09:13 PM
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Maybe too much water accumulating in the bottom of your coffee filter. Is there holes poked in ? They will wilt at soil level and topple over. Look closely.
Old 03-27-19, 10:09 PM
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I have occasionally experienced stem rot... where the seedlings just fall over and die... I think it comes from being in an environment that is a little too warm and humid. Or maybe the soil is getting too hot if it's in direct sunlight. If your tray has a lid on it you might try removing the lid or at least elevating it.

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