Fragile Sprouts - Knowledgebase Question

New York, NY
Avatar for banmeto
Question by banmeto
June 1, 2002
I planted some flower seeds in my flower bed pot recently and I had many wonderful sprouts turn up. However, (and I had the same problem last year) since the sprouts themselves are very weak and fragile I've had a hard time watering them. How can I water them without having the flower sprouts come out of the soil and lay flat since they are so fragile??? I have tried spraying them, however that doesn't last long and before I know it the soil is dry and I have to spray again (which is hard on my hands)..........ANY SUGGESTIONS??
Thank you very much. I appreciate it!

Answer from NGA
June 1, 2002
Usually, seedlings that emerge and become leggy or overly tall and weak are in need of more light. If you are starting them indoors, you may need to use supplemental lighting beyond what is available on a window sill. Ordinary shop lights with fluorescent bulbs will do the job.

Also, make sure you are planting the seeds far enough apart so that they are not too crowded and blocking both light and air circulation from reaching the base of the stems. You will also need to transplant them into larger pots as they grow, or thin them if you have several to a small pot initially.

Finally, watering can be done with a bulb syringe (or a "borrowed" turkey baster) or water can be dribbled carefully from a narrow-mouthed container so as to avoid wetting the foliage. This will help to reduce the risk of fungal attack as well.

Good luck with your seedlings.

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