IMPORTANT tips for sowing seeds

Just like this baby ,seeds have all the genetic information in them to grow to adulthood and thrive. Our job as gardeners like parents is to give them the best conditions possible to allow them to do this with the least stress possible.

Our seeds come packed with enough energy to germinate and produce the 1st couple of small leaves known as seed leaves after that they need to supply themselves with energy and the way plants do this is by converting light. It’s very important to remember that either too little or too much heat will stop germination!

Too little or too much moisture will stop germination,!

Planting too deeply will mean our seedlings run out of energy before reaching the surface and being able to produce more through their seed leaves, thus germinating but not getting to the surface!.

They, also like babies, young plants can be very prone to diseases so cleanliness is paramount for this reason all seed trays need to be washed thoroughly in a suitable disinfectant I actually use one designed the chicken incubators, all pots need to be new and or compost of the highest quality, buying cheap compost at this point is a totally   false, economy  as cheap composts contain very few of the nutrients needed for growth and are much harder to keep moist as they contain no wetting agents.

Wherever possible I prefer to use Jiffy Sevens as these are used just once and therefore you avoid all the problems of contamination and diseases killing your plants when they are at their most vulnerable.

I also tend to use vermiculite to cover my seeds as this is much better at keeping even moisture around the seeds and also allows the seeds to push through quicker  thereby getting those vital seed leaves out as soon as possible, and is totally sterile, as a rough rule of thumb seed needs to be covered with no more than its own depth of compost, sofas and very fine seed it’s hardly covered at all.


A lot of plants once growing, will grow at a much cooler temperature than they will germinate out at and as we have a short growing season in a lot of cases it is much better start your seeds off in the controlled environment of ideally greenhouse or a cold frame, this also allows you to make sure there are no spaces in your deep beds when space is at a premium especially in our 10 Minute Garden.

The other thing to remember is that the smoother the growing season with if possible no checks in growth then ultimately the better bigger and tastier your harvest will be.

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