Monday, November 29, 2010

Can't hurt to try - Part 2

In my post of October 12th I was addressing adding CO2 to the seedlings in a domed container by exhaling into a tube feeding into the container.

Someone inquired in the comments section as to whether I thought this idea was making a difference. To tell the absolute truth I really don't know for sure, as I had made other changes to my seed starting procedures at the same time.

What I do know at this point is that my seedlings have never looked better, or grown so quickly. The seedlings in the photo above are twelve days from the date I placed the dry seeds into a moist coffee filter.

The domed container is a shoe storage box rescued from recycle, and I am using ice cube trays, drilled for drainage, to hold the media. (Wal-Mart 3 for $1.73) The media is something I stumbled upon that works as well, or better, than rockwool or oasis horticubes. I would include sure to grow, but that stuff does not work anyway. The main benefit of the media is that while it is absorbent the top remains dry, which prevents the growth of algae.

Back to my thinking on the CO2 issue; the exhaled breath forces the existing air out of the container and replaces it with an atmosphere rich in CO2. Additionally, the air passing over the seedlings vibrates them, much like a breeze, causing cell growth on the stem, preventing them from becoming spindly. Kind of like a self prevention reaction: if I don't buff up, I am going to get blown over. That said, I will continue to add CO2 by exhaling into the container, as it sure is not hurting the seedlings.

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