Killing algae in pots?

Leon Miguel lmiguel at
Tue Dec 3 21:51:37 EST 1996


Once again, I am having trouble with algae infecting pots in which I am 
growing (trying to grow..) Arabidopsis.

I have two different media (i) coir/vermiculite/perlite, grown in free 
draining pots and (ii) white sand and vermiculite in sealed pots.

I can steam the mix, sow under clean conditions (but not sterile as in 
laminar flow, but still reasonably clean, with benches, balance and 
spoons etc washed in bleach or ethanol), cover the pots in new plastic,
and get a nice crop of green algae. This usually kills about half my 
plants, usually at  about 14 days. The algae is often worse in the sealed 
pots. Note that the green algae is fairly mild compared with the 
brown/orange algaes that I  had earlier: these could kill all plants wihtin

Does anyone know of any algacides that are suitable for Arabidopsis? I 
have been recommended simazine (toxic to Arabidopsis, but okay for some 
larger species) and copper, which I am hesitant to use.

I think that I have done all I can as far as preparation goes, as I 
really do not want to use a laminar flow hood for all my work (just too 
many pots! Also, the infection may be occuring once they are placed in 
the growth room, which is not sterile).

Any suggestions most welcome



Leon Miguel   
Centre for Legumes in Mediterranean Agriculture (CLIMA)
University of Western Australia
Email: lmiguel at     Phone: 61 9 380 1982

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