right now

right now

Apr 8, 2009

Seedling Emergency!

This morning as I was turning on the lights for my seedlings, I was assaulted by GNATS!  I saw one the other night, but attributed it to the seedlings being outside for a couple of hours that day hardening off, but this morning...ugh!  I know what gnats look like, but didn't know if they could cause any real damage...so I research it to death like I always do and find out that indeed adult flying gnats cause no real damage, but the LARVAE from the eggs they deposit in the soil actually damage the plant by eating parts of the roots.  I then came across only a couple of things that can help, both being chemical/non-organic in nature.  No matter, I decide...they have to go and I am willing to do anything to save my heirlooms!  Off to the garden center I go, complaining kids in tow, and find none of the products recommended but instead stumble upon a line of products made by Pharmsolutions of WA.  Of course they have beautiful packaging to lead your eye away from the price and seem to have a product for every need, one bottle is called "Indoor Pharm" and is intended just for indoor seedlings, plants, and hydroponics.  Perfect!  Bonus...specifically intended for fungus gnats!  I took the bait and bought a bottle and also picked up a bottle of "Veggie Pharm" to have on hand once my outdoor garden is in full swing.  They state they are safe for beneficials too, which is important since we do everything we can to attract and keep beneficials, including importing them!  
The product label says to test on a plant first, so I "sacrificed" some seedlings (the ones on the right in photo) for a full-on assault with this stuff to see if the plants survive.  My sacrificial plants are tomato seedlings with only 1 set of leaves past the cotyledons, and I soaked the soil and the foliage to get a good idea of how early I could get away with using this stuff and how forcefully.  A "worst case scenario" if you will!  I will let you know how they look tomorrow and if the gnats are gone...keep your fingers crossed that I will have a positive product review on this...since I already bought it, lol!  (BTW, price was 14.99 for 35 fl oz., not really too bad since the bottle is large enough to last a good while.)

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