Soil super wet


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Hi all. Just joined so be nice to me. :)

I've started some seeds indoors in a 50/50 potting soil/peat moss mix. Red flag? It seems really heavy and wet and won't drain and lighten up.

Should I start over w dif soil? I'm using 10x20 plug cells. Also considering capillary mat watering instead of watering can. Suggestions welcome.
 
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Peat is used to retain water and to acidify soil. I would start over with a mix of no more than 30% peat.
 
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Thanks, that's what I was afraid of. Ugh! I'm going just dump my trays back in the wheel barrow, "dilute" it w regular soil mix. Right now it's 1:1, adding 2 more part soil mix should make it 3:1, 25% peat moss. Then I'll check how it drains before I reseed.
 
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If you have any 3% hydrogen peroxide to hand, you could give your soil that, it would drive some of the water out, then rescue what germinates, but Chuck is right, the simplest solution is to restart.
You could dilute it with 25% sand.
 

NigelJ

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Try adding some builders sand.
In the UK builders sand is not recommended for use in garden applications and sharp sand or horticultural sand is to be preferred.
Particle size is small and it tends to stick together in lumps; also may contain lime and other minerals that may adversely affect plant growth.
It is possible that in the US builders sand is different to the material supplied under that name in the UK
 
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The issue is probably what you added to the peat. It's a sterile medium which is why it's used in seed starting mix. You had a lot of options before dumping and starting over. You could have put a fan on, for instance. It's helpful to let others know what setup your using. Indoors most people use lights and heat mats, if you were doing that the moisture wouldn't be as much of an issue. Also, you didn't say how wet for how long. If there was evidence of a problem such as algae on the surface or mold, that would be a reason to maybe start over, but there are ways of addressing those things as well. In nature seeds go through all manner of conditions and still survive and germinate.
Maybe let everyone know what your setup is, what specific seeds you are trying to start, and update your profile with your grow zone.
 
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UPDATE. Zone 9/10, Sacramento Valley, California. Things seem to have worked out, by God's grace. ChanellG was right, nature has a way of overcoming even silly gardeners. I got soil moisture under control. There was some damping off (lost all cucumbers and ~25% of others) but getting them outside in the sun helped - we had a cold, gray spring, but it will be 80°F today. I've been potting up ASAP to a better draining soil mix and having good success. Transplanting will start this week. Thanks for all of you input.
 
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UPDATE. Zone 9/10, Sacramento Valley, California. Things seem to have worked out, by God's grace. ChanellG was right, nature has a way of overcoming even silly gardeners. I got soil moisture under control. There was some damping off (lost all cucumbers and ~25% of others) but getting them outside in the sun helped - we had a cold, gray spring, but it will be 80°F today. I've been potting up ASAP to a better draining soil mix and having good success. Transplanting will start this week. Thanks for all of you input.
You can flush with a betadine wash if fungus attacks. A couple of tablespoons (30mL) at least in a gallon of water. Its a contact killer, and wont hurt you or the plant or stain. And its cheap, which I find particularly attractive.
 
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In the UK builders sand is not recommended for use in garden applications and sharp sand or horticultural sand is to be preferred.
Particle size is small and it tends to stick together in lumps; also may contain lime and other minerals that may adversely affect plant growth.
It is possible that in the US builders sand is different to the material supplied under that name in the UK
Try sharp or horticultural sand - suggest keeping watering down to a minimum. When starting seeds indoors I find easiest to
just use some seed starting mix - whatever works best for you.
 
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You can flush with a betadine wash if fungus attacks. A couple of tablespoons (30mL) at least in a gallon of water. Its a contact killer, and wont hurt you or the plant or stain. And its cheap, which I find particularly attractive.
I haven't even heard the word betadine in decades! Never would I ever have thought of it for garden use. Peroxide is picking up in popularity in garden circles; is betadine cheaper?
 
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I haven't even heard the word betadine in decades! Never would I ever have thought of it for garden use. Peroxide is picking up in popularity in garden circles; is betadine cheaper?
Maybe 10 dollars a quart, last I bought it as it lasts quite a while since it can stick on until flushed away. I strictly use it for fungus as we get very high and extreme pressure in the heat and humidity of summer here.
 

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