From Seed to Success
Buying plug plants from commercial growers is expensive so this year I am having a go myself.
I am retired and have lots of free time and unused window sills, even bedroom floors in the house as well as a large greenhouse with up to tiers of standings I made my self.
Last year and before I brought on well over 2500 bought plug plants and sell the surplus, those I don’t plant out in my own garden, at the “front door” or to be exact in my front courtyard to passing locals.
I can sell them cheaply too having few overheads and any that I dont sell I plant out myself.
I transplant all plug plants on arrival in to compost filled 9cm or 13cm pots and grow them on until bedding plant turn out time.
I select common bedding plant varieties and also have grown successfully perennials from seed and sell them on too
Its a hobby, I dont need the money but I see it as a kind of service to the community.
Brightening up the miserable looking front & back gardens by adding colour.
So this year I am growing my own plug plants from seed.
I have the trays the commercial growers sent their plug plants in last year.
Trays for 180, 150,& 66 individual seeds.
I bought Serving tea trays from Ikea for one pound each and a £5.95 square seed dropper called a Magic Seeder.
Three plug plant trays to one Ikea tray leaves enough room to water conservatively.
I have seeds that I have bought as plug plants to compare success or failure and diffent Hardy and Half Hardy Annuals that can be planted indoors in January.
But I want to get the started earlier.( Any Advice would be welcome-so “Get in Touch”)
I want to start them earlier as I believe I need to get a head start on the commercial boys who have the conditions sorted for mass production.
Also its a first time thing and I need experience at planting seed and managing propagation.
And if I dont suceed at first I can try again when the weather picks up.
Seed germination is a tricky question but I shall start about 8 weeks before I would normally expect to get the plug plants delivered, which is from late February.
Early Flowering Panies can be started in late September or earlier for a Spring showing.
My Hyacinth bulbs are putting down roots now, are in the dark and will stay there until mid November for Christmas flowering.
The same goes from Tete a Tete Daffs, Crocuses and other bulbs and corms we are trying out.
There are a couople of useful sites to read up on and I enclose these :-
To sum up – I have grown mini plug plants on and I have grown seed in plastic mushroom boxes with holes burnt out successfully,but in the Greenhouse
Growthing individual seeds in trays, using a seed dropper,indoors is new, so any advice will be gratefully accepted.