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Carolina Reaper Seed Watering Help!

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#1 Palmetto

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 06:27 PM

Hello, I am currently on my second attempt germinating Carolina Reaper seeds. The thing I did wrong on the first try was I would water them then they would get completely dry within an hour, so they never grew. Now I have a humidity dome and heat mat and have a few questions about watering. I am afraid of either making the seeds not grow from lack of water or making them rot. So I put the seeds in the little cells on my growing tray and watered them very well on Tuesday, which is when they went in. They are on a heat mat with a humidity dome. Today I noticed that there is a ring of dry soil around moist soil in the middle. My question is, do they need watered or are they fine? How do I tell if I need to water them? And do I water from the top (I did the first time) or the bottom (since my tray has holes in each cell)? Finally, does the heat mat make the water dry faster at the bottom of the soil and leave the top looking moist, or is it if the top is moist so is the bottom? I have attached pictures. Thank you for any help! I am new to this!

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Edited by Palmetto, 07 June 2018 - 06:30 PM.


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#2 Palmetto

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 06:31 PM

Sorry about the sideways pictures, I don't know what went wrong with those.

#3 Bicycle808

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 08:22 PM

A lot of experienced growers don't like it, but I'd suggest rocking the paper towel method for rookie growers like you and I, who have far more angst than we have patience. But, instead of paper towels, use coffee filters. And, instead of Reapers, grow Primos.

But for the ones you already got in the media, best bet is to keep them wet as F till they sprout. They won't germinate if they dry out. Once they become little plants, though, you need to water them less because too much moisture, and they'll dampen off, which sucks.

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Edited by Bicycle808, 07 June 2018 - 11:17 PM.

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#4 DontPanic

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 03:07 PM

Interesting!

I've never had problems with the potting soil drying out under the humidity dome.

It does kinda look like the heating mat is heating up the tray to the point the soil is drying out.

How hot is that heating mat?

Maybe you could close off that vent so that it's just partially open. I don't even have a vent on my humidity dome.

#5 AndyW

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 05:49 PM

Has the "soil" been wetted properly? It looks like peat, and I know when I bought a little tray pre-filled with it, it took forever to figure out how to wet it properly (I was a complete novice with no experience with peat)



#6 solid7

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 09:04 PM

Isn't it warm enough in Virginia right now, that you could germinate them outdoors, in Solo cups?

.

I've actually not found anything yet that beats them.

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The red ones.  Gold is second best, but not so much the blue ones.  Shame, too, because I like blue better than red.


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#7 Palmetto

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 10:23 PM

Thank you all, I just tried watering from the bottom and after a hour some cells soaked up the water and some did not. The ones that did not I just gave a good soaking with the spray bottle, while trying to not turn up the soil. The soil is actually coconut fiber with about 1/4 peat moss. It is warm enough to grow them outside here but I am not home for days straight sometimes, so I can't check on them every day. AndyW, what was the way you wet your peat moss? 


Edited by Palmetto, 09 June 2018 - 10:23 PM.


#8 AndyW

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 10:38 PM

I'm not sure of the best way to do it. I just dumped the cells out and mixed it all with water. I'm sure there's a better way, but I'm not very experienced with peat.



#9 solid7

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 11:08 PM

You should not have ANY problem getting coco to wet.  Even with peat added.


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#10 Palmetto

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 11:36 PM

Solid7, I am not sure what you mean by this. Do you mean coco tends to dry really fast? 



#11 AndyW

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 11:55 PM

Oh, I didn't see your edit. Afaik, coco wets much more easily, and contact with it should wet the peat fairly easily too.

#12 solid7

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 08:43 AM

Oh, I didn't see your edit. Afaik, coco wets much more easily, and contact with it should wet the peat fairly easily too.

 

I didn't edit.  I was just saying that it's odd that you are having troubles with this, because coco wets so easily.  And yes, the peat will wet easier with coco addition.


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#13 AndyW

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 11:16 AM

 

I didn't edit.  I was just saying that it's odd that you are having troubles with this, because coco wets so easily.  And yes, the peat will wet easier with coco addition.

 

I meant op's post including the fact that eh had coco in the mix. I may have just missed that part the first time I read, but I could've sworn that the first time I read and replied to it (post #7), I didn't see anything about coco coir.



#14 Palmetto

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 01:14 PM

Little update, no sprouts yet, although it has not even been a full week since I planted them yet. So far they are actually staying pretty moist, which I think is a result of me watering a bit from the bottom and top. Sorry for the sideways pictures again, maybe I need to take my pictures holding my phone horizontally.

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#15 solid7

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 02:16 PM

This is just me, being disruptive, as usual...  

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I honestly have never quite gotten the whole heat mat and humidity dome thing.  I find it totally unnecessary for pepper plants.  I've never used these things, in either outdoor or hydro grow - and I'm talking in any of the states that I've lived in - and mine ALWAYS germinate, better than 90%.

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Do the community here a favor, if you will.  Please try germinating 3 or 4 seeds in plastic solo cups.  No cover, no heat.  Just inside, near a window.  Wet it once, and forget it.  Tell us if it works better for you than the other.

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#16 AJ Drew

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:50 PM

I agree with Solid7 unless your grow room is fairly cold when you start.  Mine is because the heavy lights dont come on till the first batch of seeds are a few inches up and out of the medium.  For those first few rounds or for really pesky seeds with low germination rates, I use chicken incubators.  They have a reservoir in them, so even at 90 degrees I can check one a day and they are fine.

If things are warm enough, a solo cup with a hole sitting in an inch of water seems to work.  I am a huge fan of bottom watering and leaving a reservoir.  Thing is, I do that mainly because nobody else in my house seems to be able to tell when something needs water.  Solo cup alone is fine if you check it regularly.


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#17 Chilidude

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 05:10 AM

I dont keep the vent open in my mini greenhouse until the seeds germinates and no heating mat either, room temperature or a little higher is all it needs for the seeds to start germinating in time.



#18 Palmetto

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 11:58 AM

Thanks everyone, I'll keep these seeds how they are now, and if I ever order more I'll try a different method.





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