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Avatar for piegirl25
Jun 2, 2020 8:16 AM CST
Name: piegirl
Mid
I've noticed that several of my terra-cotta pots always get a mildew/mold and start to smell after a while. It doesn't seem to directly affect my plants but it's quite annoying. Are they're anyways that I can remove permanently or at least long enough to the point where I won't have to worry who it it for a while? All answers appreciated.
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Jun 3, 2020 5:15 AM CST
Name: Sally
central Maryland (Zone 7b)
Let's all play ukulele
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You could plant you plants in plastic nursery pots and set those inside the terra cotta (can be a pain finding the right fit but you might not be as picky as I am)
And then your terra cotta will stay dry and clean.
Worry, why do I let myself worry?
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Jun 3, 2020 7:16 AM CST
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Is the white stuff samp and slimy or is it dry and crusty?

Do you live in a very humid area?

How is your water quality?
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at wcreed@HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Avatar for piegirl25
Jun 3, 2020 7:46 PM CST
Name: piegirl
Mid
The white stuff is usually powdery and kind of fuzzy. My area gets quite dry, especially towards to summer months but somewhat humid in the spring. The water is hard so water softener is used to help it. Sometimes my pots get lots of calcium deposits too within a couple hours after watering.
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Jun 4, 2020 8:37 AM CST
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Those are mineral deposits that have seeped through the terra cotta. Excess minerals in the soil can damage tender roots over time. Softened water also contains minerals that are not good for plants. It is better to use filtered or distilled water for your plants.

You can wash or scrape off the mineral deposits on the pots although they are harmless. You might also consider flushing lots of clear water through the soil to remove some of the excess minerals that have already accumulated in the soil.

Letting the soil get too dry will also cause minerals to concentrate more so be sure you are not under-watering.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at wcreed@HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
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