The Q&A Archives: Zinnias Die At 2 Inches And Brown Leaves

Question: STarting from seed, my zinnias sprout quickly and reach about 2 inches. They have their first two leaves, but never show their "true leaves" since the two leaves always start to turn brown and then die. I bought good mix (or so I thought . . . miracle grow potting mix)) what is the problem? Might it be the temperature of the cell packs, cuz they arent very warm)

Answer: Zinnias are occasionally subject to damping off and other fungal problems, so to minimize that you would want to use a relatively sterile soilless mix, ensure good air circulation, avoid overwatering or wetting the foliage, and also provide very bright light such as that from a fluorescent shop fixture with a "warm" color bulb and a "cool" color bulb with the bulbs kept just an inch or so above the leaves. Growing on temperatures should be about 65 degrees, lower temperatures will cause slower growth. I hope this helps you trouble shoot.

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