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RE: Sterilizing spore & agar as a growth medium.

  • Subject: RE: Sterilizing spore & agar as a growth medium.
  • From: "Koning, Ross E. (Biology)" <KONING@easternct.edu>
  • Date: Sun, 24 Jan 2010 23:27:29 -0500
  • Thread-index: AcoA26KkG/TyRmmlQw6PsMne8rjVZicaq+pgAAvgUg8=
  • Thread-topic: [ferns] Sterilizing spore & agar as a growth medium.

Hi Darren,

I generally have NOT tried to surface-sterilize spores prior to sowing...and
most of the time I have had good results. If you were working with really slow
growing types or kinds that were very sensitive to bacteria or fungi, I guess
you might need to do it. Alcohol and Clorox bleach (various dilutions) are
often used. Some species might be very sensitive to one or the other, so some
experimentation with dilution and duration of exposure might be needed.

I sow spores directly into Knopp's Agar with NO sugar or other carbon
source...just the minerals, water, and agar. I get very little contamination
from fungi and bacteria. It has worked for me many times. The major trick is
to get as few spores as possible on the plate. If the population is too dense,
you get major competition problems...with all of the gametophyes losing. If
you can see the spores on the plate with unaided vision, you have TOO MUCH.

I keep the plates under dim fluorescent light at room temperature for the
species I have grown from spores.


-----Original Message-----
From: owner-ferns@hort.net on behalf of Darren Lloyd
Sent: Sun 1/24/2010 5:47 PM
To: ferns@hort.net
Subject: [ferns] Sterilizing spore & agar as a growth medium.


Do any of you sterilize your spore prior to sowing it, and if so could you
tell me how please?

I have read about various methods, including alcohol.

Also, do any of you use agar as an initial growth medium?

It seems to be used fairly widely, but is there any real advantage in doing



Darren Lloyd

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