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How To Grow Poinsettias From Seed. 3 Easy Steps

If you want to know how to grow poinsettias from seed, it only requires three steps. It would be useful to understand various propagation methods for poinsettias, including starting it from seeds. The good news is that rooting poinsettias from seeds is relatively straightforward.

Those who have a greenhouse also have a headstart in using poinsettia seeds. Remember that most plant seeds require ideal conditions to sprout, and it’s easier to achieve them in a controlled environment indoors. With more than 100 poinsettia varieties, you can also choose which will work the best in your region and preferred gardening practices. 

 

How To Grow Poinsettias From Seed. 3 Easy Steps

How To Propagate Poinsettias From Seed For Success

 

Step #1. Pollination and seed collection

To start growing poinsettias from seeds, you need to learn how to collect them yourself. You can always get your seeds from a trusted nursery, but it’ll be advantageous to get them yourself if you have mature plants. It might not sound very easy, but you can actually pollinate the poinsettia flowers yourself.

Remember that poinsettias bloom in winter, and you can help them develop seeds by picking up their pollen using a cotton swab. Just be gentle in brushing and handling the plants, and you should notice green bulbs growing on the stalks. These are the seed pods that you can wait to mature for seed collection. 

By the end of the flowering season, the blooms will fade, and the pods will also turn brown. Collect the seed pods and store them in a paper bag for further drying. Place the bags somewhere cool and dry for some time, and you should be ready to pop them open to collect the small dark seeds for sowing. 

 

Step #2. Seed stratification

Another reason why some gardeners refrain from growing poinsettias from seeds is that they require stratification. Remember that some plants need seed stratification to ensure germination, and this is true for poinsettias. You must place the seeds inside the refrigerator for three months before sowing them. 

What this does is simulating winter to encourage the seeds to germinate as they would naturally in the wild. You can also check out another cold stratification method to suit what’s comfortable for you. However, some gardeners mentioned that they have successfully sprouted poinsettia seeds even without preparation, so perhaps this requirement varies per species. 

 

Step #3. Planting

Planting poinsettia seeds will then be straightforward, but know that it can take weeks for them to germinate. However, you can ensure success in growing poinsettia seeds in the greenhouse and maintain stable conditions. Sow one seed at a depth of one and half-inch per pot and place the containers somewhere bright but out of direct sunlight. 

You want to ensure soil moisture and protect them from harsh temperatures to guarantee to sprout in one to two weeks. According to the University of Vermont Extension, these plants prefer temperatures between 60 to 70°F. Extremely cold conditions and drafts can damage your poinsettias, so it’s best to grow them in the greenhouse where you can control the indoor climate. 

 

 

How To Transplant Poinsettias

According to the University of Minnesota, the best time to transplant poinsettias is in late spring or early summer. Use a well-draining pot with a mix of soil and peat moss or in the garden with well-draining soil. Ensure that the medium is moist and the plants will get at least four hours of sunlight and then water them thoroughly after transplanting. 

 

Caring And Growing Poinsettias

 

Location

You can use grow lights to provide the poinsettias their light requirements, but if you’re outdoors, they must receive four to six hours of sunlight every day. The location itself should also provide stable temperatures around 65 to 70°F with some humidity to maintain poinsettias. Extreme dryness, heat, and freezing temperatures will damage the plants.

 

Water and fertilizer

Always monitor your soil moisture but never overwater the poinsettias. You want to use a well-draining medium and containers to prevent the soil from getting soggy as this can cause root rot. Gardeners often water the plants as needed from January to March. 

You can feed your plants when they are actively growing, but make sure to dilute it accordingly. As for maintenance, fertilize every four weeks, but stop during the holidays. An all-purpose houseplant fertilizer would be enough for poinsettias. 

 

Reblooming

Can you get poinsettias to rebloom? The good news is it is possible, but you need to do specific practices. Gardeners notice that you can encourage reblooming by reducing the light for the plants. 

 

Conclusion

There is no other plant that can immediately get you nostalgic for the holidays, like the poinsettia. And the good news is learning how to grow poinsettias from seed is even easy. Don’t be intimidated by the need to pollinate the flowers and stratify the seeds yourself. 

As a gardener, it’s best to learn different techniques that you can apply to other plants as well. Start by collecting the seed pods and letting them dry to collect the seeds. Store the seeds in the refrigerator for three months before sowing in the greenhouse. 

The advantage of sowing poinsettia seeds in the greenhouse is you can protect them from fluctuating temperatures. This way, you can guarantee germination in one to two weeks. Maintain soil moisture and place the pots somewhere bright to encourage the growth of your plants. 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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