Propagating your own plants from seeds is much more rewarding and less
expensive than buying seedlings from the garden supply shop. One of the
first things you will need is a box or tray approximately 3 to 4 inches deep,
12 to 14 inches wide, and 20 to 24 inches long.
Once you have your planting box, fill it with a suitable seed raising mix. A
good medium would be 80-85% washed river sand and 15-20% peat moss.
If you prefer to buy a bag of seed raising mix, visit your local garden supply
store. One you have your medium, fill the box almost to the top, and then
pat down the medium firmly.
Prepare the medium for planting your seeds by making rows across the
box. They should be one quarter to half inch deep and 2 inches apart.
The seed should be distributed 8 or 10 to the inch in the rows and then be
covered. Move the box to a warm shaded place.
It is important to water regularly during germination, however the soil
should be kept moist not wet. If the water starts running out the bottom
of the box you are over doing it and the soil will become waterlogged. If
this happens, the seeds could rot and fail to germinate.
If you can cover the box with a piece of glass or even saran wrap, this will
hold the moisture, creating a microclimate, which will hasten germination.
Once the seedlings germinate the lid can be removed and the seedlings
can gradually be introduced to stronger light - next to a window would be
When the plants are one inch to an inch and a half high they should be
thinned to one or two inches apart in the row, to give them space enough
to make a strong stocky growth. If you wish to keep the plants that have
been thinned, they must be planted two inches apart each way in boxes
similar to the seed box.
When the weather becomes mild, the box of plants should be set out of
doors part of the time so that the plants will harden in preparation for
transplanting to the garden later. Give the seedlings a good watering just
before transplanting so that a ball of earth will stick to the roots.
By raising seedlings in this controlled climate of germination, they will be
hardier and flourish. You will also have the added satisfaction of having
done all the work yourself.
For more information on gardening, visit the link at the bottom of the page.
For more information, visit http://gardensupplyguide.com and http://www.gardeninfocenter.com