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Why grow cactus seedlings in a plastic bag?
First time I ever tried to grow cacti from seeds was a really disaster. I ordered a kit with 12 different seeds and a germinator. I put soil in the small plastic square pots, the seeds and water. Then I waited. After a while the seeds start to germinate and I was so happy. Then after a while I noticed that some of the small seedlings just fell over and they had no roots? I spayed the pots with natural bug poison, and it crawled up a lot of larvae. It was Sciara. They destroyed nearly all of the seedlings.
The second time I where more careful and sterilize all the soil in the microwave to prevent gnat eggs. Then I put a layer of sand on top. This time it worked out fine. The only trouble this time was that I have picked out species that need different environments at different stages of their lives. Some needed fresh air and not so high humidity two days after germination. I had a real trouble to give them what they wanted and failed with a lot of them.
From now on I always grow my cactus seedlings in plastic bags. Well, it works with any closed environment; the plastic bags are just simple and cheap! Somehow the environment regulates it self in there, and you can grow as many different species as you like in different bags. I am growing messembs (Aizoaceae) in bags as well. Some species of cacti have been in a bag for two years soon (Blossfeldia). No problems with gnats or mold, and no more watering! (Well, maybe some...)
It's just perfect for the slow growing species.
Last edited: Sun Sep 06, 2009 6:40 pm
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Useful information Christer. You've proved that practice makes perfect!
I wonder if this technique could be tried for other plants as well...
Well sure. If it's a slow-grower it should work. I've just tried on messembs and cacti...