We Start a Few More Seeds and the Mystery is Solved!
It came time to start the second round of seed varieties – this time, quite a few tomato and eggplant varieties. I was on more familiar ground now. I had often started these same plants at home! Once again, I got a few other volunteers to come help and we got another bunch of seeds potted up. Spring was warming up a bit, and we nearly always have sun here, so I committed to checking in daily.
These seedlings were quite a bit larger than the osteospermum when they first came up, but they didn’t seem to be coming up in the numbers I expected them to. And sure enough, they didn’t get much larger, and after awhile, it seemed they’d disappeared. I was panicking a bit….reading up on damping off disease, something I knew was supposed to be a problem in greenhouse culture. But I wasn’t seeing the pinching at the bottom of the seedlings. I wasn’t seeing…well anything! But I diligently stopped by each day to water and and encourage the little seeds.
I had extras of the tomato and eggplant seeds, so I asked a few volunteers to help me replant. We dumped the old six pot soil into bins and then redistributed the soil before planting the new seeds (we were very careful to only use “old” soil from the same varieties to plant the new seeds…just in case!). (more…)