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White blobs on my terracotta pot. What is it?

Sazz101Sazz101 BucksPosts: 181
Hello All. Is this fungus? Limescale? Not on any other pots. Chalky when I rub it. Any ideal time of how to permanently stop it happening? Thank you.


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  • PalustrisPalustris Posts: 3,924
    Lime scale. Never found a way of stopping it. Clean off with a pan scrubber and sand.
  • Sazz101Sazz101 BucksPosts: 181
    Palustris said:
    Lime scale. Never found a way of stopping it. Clean off with a pan scrubber and sand.
    Thank you Palustris:)
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 28,226
    If you scrub the pot and dry it completely in a warm, dry place you can paint it with clear acrylic, water-based varnish in matt, satin or gloss finish according to taste.  It will stop water entering and causing the limescale stains but also protect it from frost damage.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,289
    We don't get limescale of any significance here - even in kettles. That's quite something! 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • FireFire North LondonPosts: 16,570
    I thought the white marks came from salts coming out of the tap water or fertiliser.
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 28,226
    Calcium deposits from hard water is more likely but, either way, the varnishing does the trick.   I do it to all my unglazed pots before planting up.  3 coats, inside and out with a day between to dry thoroughly.  2 coats will do if you're impatient and their location is sheltered but never more than 3 coats or it goes milky looking.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Sazz101Sazz101 BucksPosts: 181
    @Obelixx, thanks for the tip. Would you ever eat something that had been grown in a coated pot?
  • We never get limescale here either. :)
    The downside is that we do get holes in our copper pipes. You see the little blue pin-prick marks appearing and know that before very long there will be another plumber's bill :(
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 28,226
    Yes @Sazz101.  Water based acrylic varnish sets hard and gives off no nasty chemicals.
     
    I grow herbs in them and started off a small lemon tree in one.  It's no been moved to a bigger, plastic pot to give it room to grow and make it easier to move into the polytunnel for winter and then back out again for summer.

    I also have a peach tree and a nectarine in two more coated pots and now big enough enough to be planted out.  They have both given fruits.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Sazz101Sazz101 BucksPosts: 181
    Thanks @Obelixx. Will wait for spring now and give it a go. Sanding it had improved then look no end, so hopefully will look decent until my tulips are done :)
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