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Propagation: I suck at growing from seeds? Cotyledon issue

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Forum: PropagationReplies: 5, Views: 136
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(Zone 10a)

May 5, 2011
10:51 AM

Post #8541598

Ok, so I direct sowed several things that came up but either came up yellow, eaten, or a mix. The nasturtiums came up really healthy and have many leaves, but now some of the leaves come up and they the edges curl up all around the leaf. Too much water?

Also, I did the baggie method for Cucumber, Zucchini, Tomatoes, and Tomatillo. The Tomatillo came up beautifully, once I planted the little seeds with their initial sprout. The cucumber more or less came up well with blue-greenish cotyledons. Most of the zucchini cotyledons have some kind of blemish/imperfection/curvature in them, I don't know what that could be caused from. Also, the few tomatoes that did sprout so far look they have a tiny bite out of one side of each cotyledon, and then the cotyledon mid way in the leaf makes a 90 degree turn. It doesn't look right. People grow seeds all the time, I don't know why there's always something not quite right with my seeds. Please help! Am I keeping the area too wet? I have to keep it fairly moist due to the seedlings that still have popped their heads.

Please help! Thanks.


PS I'm in coastal San Diego area

This message was edited May 5, 2011 11:16 AM
Carmel, IN
(Zone 5b)

May 5, 2011
3:54 PM

Post #8542202

Z--you might want to try posting a photo or two if you can. Someone may be able to help identify the issue. For now, I would start by making sure that you're not overwatering, have good air flow, and that your seedlings are close to a good light source.

Don't forget that many plants will lose their cotyledons at some point once they start getting true leaves, so they don't have to be "perfect", they just need to do their job and get the plant started! Sometimes cotyledons will get distorted if the seed coat doesn't come off properly.


(Zone 10a)

May 8, 2011
8:40 PM

Post #8548913

Ok, here's a picture. It is blurry I apologize. In the middle of the picture you will see a tomato seedling with holes on the bottom edges of the cotyledons (breaking away from seed coat issue?) and then the leaves have this general curve to them. Thanks.


Thumbnail by ZSThomp
Click the image for an enlarged view.


Everett, WA
(Zone 8a)

May 9, 2011
11:56 AM

Post #8550123

Holes in leaves OUTdoors?

I always assume:

It's a jungle out there!


P.S. Edited to add: whatever is doing it, doesn't it look like something has a very small Uzi and lots and lots of small-caliber ammunition?

This message was edited Aug 15, 2011 11:53 PM
Casper, WY
(Zone 4a)

June 9, 2011
8:38 PM

Post #8621310

Nasturtium are magnets for black aphids (sometimes the green) which will curl the leaves as you describe. Check under the leaves. Spray with Malathion if so.

As far as your other problems, it sounds like bugs are the culprit.
Sarasota, FL

August 15, 2011
8:26 PM

Post #8758673

I wouldn't recommend spraying malathion on anything in a garden! Try growing the seedlings indoors first and then transplanting when the plant is strong and has several real leaves. That way you're giving them a head start in a controlled environment before plunging them into the hostile outside world. For plants that do not transplant well, you may want to consider row covers to keep pests out while they are in the sensitive germination phase. There are plastic things you can buy to put over individual plants as well. Perhaps you can buy one of those or rig something up yourself from a plastic cup or clear 2-liter bottle.

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