White growth on ceramic pots

General    MI

This white stuff is growing all over my indoor ceramic pots which have my pepper plants growing in them. Is this a fungus or something? Could it be related to the death of my pepper plant which was in one of these pots? (Posted in pepper section). Is it something I should be concerned about and if so what do I do to get rid of it?

Posted by: Abby (7 points) Abby
Posted: February 2, 2013


this looks like either salt of mold. Neither is good. The salt is being soaked up by the clay plot and so it being removed from the soil (and the plant). This can often lead to the death of some sensitive plants like African Violets. If it is mold it is a problem as indoors that promotes allergies and can affect the plants too (though molds that grow like this are what are termed saprotrophs and grown on dead stuff as opposed to those that grow into live plants that are called biotrophs and a nastier because they have the chemicals to kill healthy plants but healthy plants can deal with that if not stressed).

Anyway, take the plant out. Change the soil and discard it. Soak the pots in a mild vinegar water solution and scrub off the white stuff. Let them dry very well.

Glazed pots dont have this problem but they are not as nice to look at.

good luck

Posted by: David Hughes (65 points) David Hughes
Posted: February 2, 2013

David Hughes commented,
Just saw the close up so I would say it is likely salt.
almost 11 years ago.

Abby commented,
Thank you very much. I'm glad that its nothing harmful for my plants. I will give them a wash! Thanks again

almost 11 years ago.

It's salt, aka mineral deposits. The pot looks like it was sitting in a saucer or pan to catch drainage water. Fertilizer and hard water minerals will leach from the potting mix. The minerals wick up the sides of the pot and leave these deposits. Dump the drainage water every now and then - scrub the pot as described in an earlier message.

Posted by: Charlie B. (5 points) Charlie B.
Posted: March 1, 2013

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