I am new to gardening and planting. Over the last month I purchased some soil here locally which was just not good. It held way too much moisture, I found, for planting in containers. I have since over the last week, had to toss out quite a large amount of money on this soil and the mold it caused to my seedlings. I recently purchased Vermiculite, Peat moss and Perlite and replanted everything. My question: is it possible to grow vegetables in containers with just using these three items and using a fertilizer (liquid fish fertilizer) every 3-4 weeks? And if Neem oil is safe on these plants to deal with mold on the leaves or whitefly problems? Red/green bell peppers jalapenos red onions green onions beets radish chard collards squash zucchini lettuce kale Thank you kindly and God bless you all for helping. K. Hopson.
Soil and Vegetable Planting
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Yes, seedlings can be started in a soil-free mix. An alternative to what you've proposed is a commercial mix that is specifically intended for starting seedlings.
Liquid fish fertilizer is a good choice for seedlings and should be applied starting when the seedlings develop their first true leaf (besides the initial two cotyledons or seed leaves).
Neem oil may not be safe for young seedlings, so prevention is the best option for diseases and insects. Check the moisture on the tray often: keep the soil evenly moist but not soggy to prevent mold. If you see any mold, decrease watering.