my plants are dying! - Knowledgebase Question

columbia, Ma
Avatar for kcnillawafer
Question by kcnillawafer
May 5, 2010
I have been using peat pots to start seeds growing. The plants will grow like weeds in the peat pots but as soon as i plant them in the ground or a regular pot they die. What am i doing wrong?

Answer from NGA
May 5, 2010
Peat pots can be tricky to use. Since the roots grow into the sides, you don't want to unpot them prior to planting in your garden. And, when you plant, you want to set the plant stems and roots at the same soil level as they were growing in the peat pots. You don't want to plant the pots deep enough to bury the rims or your plants will be too deep in the soil. However, if you leave the rims of the peat pots above the soil, water will be wicked from them and the potting soil, leaving the roots of your plants too dry. What I do is thoroughly water the peat pots just before transplanting them into the garden. While the peat is still damp I break away the rim of the pot so the potting soil is barely above the rest of the pot. Then I dig a hole and set the peat pot in, making sure that the soil level in the pot is exactly the same as the soil in the garden. This keeps the rims from wicking water away from the pot and the soil and ensures that the seedling is planted at the right soil depth. Give this a try - I think you'll see an improvement.

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