A customer has a question and I hope we can get some opinions on it, thanks
"I have WW-F X 20 seeds on 4-3 and got here 4-16, 5 were started 24 hr water bath then to paper towel/plastic baggie, then planted in soil mix and they were doing just fine. The next 5 were started in the same soil mix. But this time NO germination, and I thinking, too hot soil?
No dampen off so far and on the first 5, they were the darkest colored seeds. The next 5 (lighter colored seeds), I placed in soil and have not sprouted and it has been over 10 days. Fox Farm/CocoLoco plus my mix with worm castings/vermiculite/perilite/mushroom compost/kelp meal/Pro-mix/Washed Coco Coir (maybe my PH, I use PH test strips and everything checks out OK), no TDS meter but, I am growing in soil and I have not had problems before. Maybe it is the mushroom compost (I just recently added it to my mix)?
Germinated/Paper towel seeds planted in the same soil appears fine. I added water to all 5 of the second series of 5. Like I said 2 sprouted from the soil mix and 3 didn’t. 7 out of 10 made seedlings, this was from series 1 and 2 and I was very happy. But now they all died! I used to grow with ZERO problems and I follow all of the guides.
I did make up a new planting mix and this I am thinking my mix is too hot and that planting in soil that maybe I planted too deep. Temp at 75-85 F, humidity at 40-60, PH water at 6.2-6.8 but I have had damp off problems before.
PLEASE HELP! Again, my soil mix is 20% fresh harvested worm castings + 30% washed coco-coir + 50% FF Bush Doctor Coco Loco, 24 hr water soak in both series, 100% germination from paper towel, only 40% from soil, overall a 70% success rate. What am I doing wrong? 7 of 7 seedlings died and 3 of 10 seeds did not sprout"
Soil could be too hot for seedlings. I only use a soil that is meant for seedlings which has no nutes in it. If it were me I would purchase a good seedling soil to start and then when they are ready transplant into your own soil. Just my opinion but I’ve never had any issues putting the seeds into a seedling soil.
If you recently added mushroom compost to your medium mix, and all was good before; I would look at that.
Light green seeds p[lanted in all that mix. You may have diagnosed your own problem
My concern would be what PH all those ingredients caused you medium to be at?
I believe since you are using fresh ingredients all at once; You are creating a compost, and should do this mixing several months before planting into it. If you had bought a mix from a store it would have gone through a composting process. I would bet that when you first started, that mix was cooking.
Always best to start seeds in a starter cube, or a small solo cup, or 3" pot with Pro Mix only.
Yeah, that was my thought too…fresh worm casting and fresh mushroom compost, when I amend my outdoor soil I let it set in a hole for at least 3 weeks preferably while is raining some.
Plus 20% of the medium volume in worm casting, thats pretty heavy duty load…
Just my opinion…
Btw if it comes to mushroom compost, I prefer top dressing against mixing with soil…