Preventing mildew

by Lilly

Question:

Hey Brad,

Sorry to bother you again. This is my first time gardening, so I want to make sure everything is okay.

Yesterday, I noticed a tiny bit of mildew on the outside of my biodegradable seed pots. I think this is because the pots themselves are a little wet. I want to keep the room that the seedlings are in warm, so I don't open the windows. Will the mildew hurt the plants? Is there any way to prevent it? If it's not harmful, then I won't worry about it. Thanks!

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Answer:

Hi Lilly,

Your questions are no bother at all.

Let me describe two situations that I have found myself in.

The first is with growing seeds indoors. A few years back, I had mildew start and kill a lot of my seedlings which I had in my garage. At the time, I wasn't for sure what was going on...thus, I didn't know how to react.

This past season when I grew my flowers in my basement, sure enough, I started seeing mildew again. I had always grown in my garage before, but this time was my first using our basement. Right after sowing the seeds and with all the pots and potting mix wet from the first soaking, everything was too damp.

What I did, was move a fan closer and onto a little higher setting for just a couple of days.

SideNote:


I use a fan to simulate the air movement of the outdoors. This helps the seedlings grow stronger as they would if they had to "fight" the wind of the outdoors. So definitely use a fan to strengthen them.


Very quickly the seed pots and soil dried and before long, the mildew went away.

Secondly, this year I have already had a mildew episode come upon some of my container gardens. To get the mildew under control, I used a spray- on product that you could find from any store that sells garden products. (I can't recall the name of the spray).

I sprayed it a few times throughout several days and the mildew disappeared.

So, I wouldn't ignore the mildew on your containers. At least use a spray of some sorts that is designed for mildew, fungus, etc. if you can't get them dried out. And again, if you're not using a fan for air circulation, you need to use one.

Feel free to write again!!
Brad




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