I am growing peppers in my hydroponic system. I transplanted tomatoes & peppers three weeks ago. For the first two weeks the plants were growing well, but since the third week some of the plants have had dry leaves, and died.

Can you help me avoid this problem?

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  • The roots look very unhealthy, and I wonder if that's stem rot you've got there so it's too wet allowing fungal attack. Also, the plants look as though they're not getting enough light. Dec 18, 2016 at 21:17
  • Also, it looks like you are using artificial lighting - I wonder if the spectrum the light is putting out is correct (and the amount of light is adequate).
    – davidgo
    Dec 18, 2016 at 23:34

1 Answer 1


Any moist material placed against the stem of a plant can cause stem rot which is why you are not supposed to put material against a transplant higher then the original soil interface with tomatoes being a well-known exception. I am guessing you're using coir, and it's remaining moist and lying against the stem.

I use hydroton in my flood and drain system, and this dries readily between cycles so I don't see this issue. I'd want to pull the coir away from the stems that haven't rotted.

  • Hey Graham...didn't know or remember you are hydroponics! This is one of my Achilles heels, looks like so much work to learn first hand to appreciate. Definitely root rot and definitely more light...the large wood chunks was an exceptional observation. Your solution makes sense to me a non-knower of hydroponics! Obviously there are more things to know before testing or expect and allow for failures.
    – stormy
    Dec 19, 2016 at 1:28
  • I've just got a single flood and drain aquaponics system outside I use to filter my goldfish water with but I've done a bit of reading :) In hydroponics, the roots can remain wet but it's not good for stems to be constantly wet. Dec 19, 2016 at 3:05
  • I love it when something makes sense across the board. Tree roots are meant to deal with moisture, soil but the stem or truck is not. What does a single flood and drain aquaponics? Guess we should go to chat, yes? No hurry...I've got some more learning to do, put it off long enough. Grins..
    – stormy
    Dec 19, 2016 at 4:13

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