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I have discovered in my compost in pots in greenhouse, a very small, bright green ball which has a white milky centre when squashed. Today I discovered it in the bag of compost which I have used to repot my fuchias which incidentally are not doing well after being invaded by vine weevil. Does anyone know what this is?
Hi Pink Wellies, I read your posting with interest as I have never seen anything like this until today!! I opened up a new bag of peat free compost from homebase and found one of these strange 'things' in there, I was surprised to see it, as you say it was bright green and when I squashes it, it spat out a white liguid. The upshot is that I cannot help you with what it is, but I have been gardening for many years and never seen anything like this, but what I do know is that it came with the bought compost from the shop so at least I can tell you that it is not something that you have been generating yourself in your greenhouse. I am going to dig around my books to see what it is, but it did look more lake plant material rather than some sort of bug!! If I find out more I will write again!! Best Wishes urszula
Thanks Urszula. I have got a feeling that I also bought my compost from Homebase. I buy quite a bit from there and it is very possible that it came with mine also. I may make an enquiry with them next time I am there to see if there has been any other comments to them. After the vine weevil disaster with my beloved fuchias, I am relieved to find out that it is not something that I am generating myself. Keep in touch if you discover further info.
Thanks Pink Wellies
Hello Pink Wellies,
Slow release fertiliser sometimes comes as greenish balls. Some composts contain this kind of fertiliser. The packet would have wording on it to say that plant food was included in the mix. Vine weevil eggs are cream/white, gradually turning brown.
Hi Pink Wellies, I agree with Emma Crawforth. Although I have yet to come across a fresh bag of potting compost with added slow release fertiliser beads, I have often found them in the soil of potted plants bought at garden centres etc. I used to think that they were slugs' eggs! Then I came across the packets of slow release fertiliser as loose beads (or as pellets made from beads bonded together) which I now routinely add to my potted garden plants. Good brands are claimed to feed the plants for up to 6 months. Usually the individual beads are yellowish in colour, with the occasional one being darker or even bright green. On squashing old, used beads, they do indeed release a white milky liquid.
Thank you to all. Huge relief.
I was just looking for answer to what these were, i've just found some of the very same "eggs" in a bag of Miracle grow compost, most were small green "eggs" but there were some bright blue ones too. Both squished with a liquid coming out, i'd been hand picking them out as i saw them while mixing the compost with garden soil -oopps they were definately in the compost though as i saw loads of them interspersed in the compost bag before mixing with soil as i was planting out shop bought plants. I do have a bottle of plant feeding beads (dry and hard) which contain various colours but none bright green. Its a relief to know they are not slug eggs which is what i was thinking they might be even though they were interspersed and not in a big cluster.
I think the fertilizer comments were right and you might find that your Miracle grow
compost doesn't quite give the results expected as you have, like me, picked out and squashed all the "eggs". Wonderful site this, we learn everyday.
Look for Osmocote fertilizer next time you're in a garden centre and compare them.
You would not believe the number of people who take back plants to Nurseries because of the 'insect' eggs in the compost.
Probably the most frequently asked question on any of the Gardening Websites.
For those interested, most insect eggs are too small to be seen with the naked eye. Mollusc eggs are generally clear or when about to hatch, milky white.
Thanks all, i left the "eggs" in on the next load of plants i planted so hopefully they willl grow better. Sprinkled some of those plant fertiliser beads around which should hopefully make up a bit for the ermm "eggs" i took out.
Does anyone know how long it takes for the fertiliser balls to pop?
Sometimes when I move things I find them still intact after quite a considerable time
Don't think they pop - think the casing is permeable and the fertiliser seeps out very very slowly when in moist compost (well, they are slow release capsules ), and then the casing very gradually decomposes.
Ah, that makes sense I thought they were like a long term feeding thing and the case would deteriorate and release the fertiliser...
It's nice to know what they are, never come across them before