Damping-Off Prevention for Growing Greens

Views: 11531 | Last Update: 2009-04-29
Sterile soil can help keep away damping-off in hoop house growing. Learn to use hoop houses to protect greens from damping-off from an organic farmer in this free gardening video. View Video Transcript

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Daniel Botkin

Video Transcript

So there are a number of approaches to dealing with this. The first approach as you saw was through sterile soil. Seeds need sterile soil. Once they're up they can be transplanted into some garden mix or some compost blend, but for the seeding you must use sterile soil. One way, if you don't want to purchase sterile soil, would be to sterilize your own in an oven, and you could bake the soil at one hundred and sixty degrees for an hour. This will work, it will also kill off the beneficial too, the beneficial microbes so you might want to consider just mixing a rich starter mix out of a soil less ingredient. You could mix finished, excuse me; you could mix pearl light and peat moss and create a soil less mix. If you go with a soil less mix however, you're going to have to to add some type of nutrients, either a liquid fertilizer or some type of an organic blend that you could add right into your mix. So again to review you want to keep up with your crop, watch out for insect or other pest. Rodents are also a little bit dangerous, they operate here in this beautiful micro habitat, sometimes attack the older plants. But, by and large your worst enemy is the damping off fungus, and better to prevent it than to deal with it. If you do get a damping off problem, people have experimented by drying the surface of the soil with sand or powdered peat moss, but the results on that have been questionable. So, much better to use the sterile soil and not get damping off in the first place.