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Banana Plant Soil, Additives, and Fertilizer This forum is an area where you may discuss the soil to grow banana plants in, as well as soil additives such as teas, composts, manures, fertilizers and related topics.


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Old 05-02-2010, 10:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Question A good seed starting mix?

I was wondering if those who grow Musa seeds could recommend a good seed starting mix. I've been using potting soil though it seems like the top dries out and the bottom is wet. I was thinking of adding sand, vermiculite or perlite to the potting soil. I know the perlite is for drainage. Maybe the sand would help keep evenly moist? Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 05-02-2010, 10:56 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

i just used scott's seed starting mix, got it from walmart. so far 6 out of 51 of my seeds germinated within the first 25 days
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Old 05-02-2010, 02:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

Where are you trying to germinate the seeds? The best mix depends on the environment in which you are using it.

Sand will likely make your situation worse. Vermiculite drains well and holds a good amount of water. Depending on where you're growing them, pure vermiculite may work well but it may stay too wet under certain conditions.
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Old 05-02-2010, 02:30 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

I use just vermiculite.

Add water until it starts to pool and then drain that excess off and that should do.
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Old 05-02-2010, 02:31 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

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Originally Posted by turtile View Post
Where are you trying to germinate the seeds? The best mix depends on the environment in which you are using it.

Sand will likely make your situation worse. Vermiculite drains well and holds a good amount of water. Depending on where you're growing them, pure vermiculite may work well but it may stay too wet under certain conditions.
Hi John,

So far the seeds that I have received are on my patio in two-gallon containers. But I am going to receive more in a few days so I want to better prepare. I have had Ensete glacum and others in pots for over three weeks with nothing happening. I know I must be patient, but I was wondering if the surface was drying out to much. The bottom seep holes are still wet.
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Old 05-02-2010, 02:34 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

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I use just vermiculite.

Add water until it starts to pool and then drain that excess off and that should do.
Wow James! I've used that method before with palm seed in zip lock bags, but never with Musa in pots.
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Old 05-02-2010, 05:14 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

I just use half potting mix, half perlite. Seems to work well.
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Old 05-02-2010, 05:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

I stay away from vermiculite. After managing a garden center/nursery for 6 years and handling unknown large amounts of vermiculite bags and using it in potting plants, my doctor says I was probably exposed to asbestos, a common contaminate. I also smoked, so my COPD can just as easily come from that, but after quitting 12 years ago, I'm not taking any chances.
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Old 05-03-2010, 10:37 AM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

Sorry to hear that Howard, I never gave it any thought, it never crossed my mind that it was a silicate, but of course it is.
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Old 05-03-2010, 10:43 AM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

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Originally Posted by Dean W. View Post
Wow James! I've used that method before with palm seed in zip lock bags, but never with Musa in pots.
Yes indeed. I don't use bags I use sealable deli containers, same difference I suppose. I'm always poking about looking for signs of a sprout. In fact I had 6 velutina, 1 thomsonii and 1 burmese blue today!

Funny, because I use peat for my palm seeds.
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Old 05-03-2010, 02:04 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

Haha, Im blessed with living in area with no vermiculite, perlite, and all that special stuff Only speciality U can get here is Orchid potting mixture, lol.
Joke a side, that all made me to do some experiments today with potting soil mixture. We ll see results in a few weeks
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Old 05-03-2010, 03:14 PM   #12 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: A good seed starting mix?

I just got half of my order in today. I'll plant in pots using a different brand of potting mix and move to a more shaded location.
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