Planting – Timely Soil Tip

My close focus photograph of these coleus sprouts is rather blurry, but I only took the one shot, and it is a perfect example of the problem-solving tip I want to share today. When planting small seeds, even specially blended seed-starting soil can be full of lumps, small twigs, and other woodsy debris used to create the mix. Luckily for me, only one of my coleus seeds was placed on a ‘clod’ of dirt. The seed sprouted fine, the problem arose when the small root tried to reach the moisture beneath it. The hard clod of dirt it was planted on created a barrier and the sprout withered a day or two after emerging from the seed.

To give future seeds a better chance I filled the bottom of the container with about 1.5 inches of seed starter, then using an old sifter, I added about 1/4 inch of finely sifted seed starter mix. This makes a huge difference in the success of growing small seeds.

After sifting, place the container in a shallow pan of water and allow the mix to wick up more water. If the bottom layer of seed starter is sufficiently drenched, the sifted layer will absorb plenty of water for sprouting. Make sure and cover small seedlings with plastic wrap or another type of lid to ensure uniform moistness through the sprouting stage.

4 thoughts on “Planting – Timely Soil Tip

  1. No wonder your seeds behave perfectly!!!

    I have given up on seeds. You were so generous with seeds, but last year I lost most of the seedlings. I’m faring much better rooting coleus cuttings. We’ve had lovely leaves on the kitchen window all winter. I still mentally thank you every day for getting me started.

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    1. Timelesslady

      Aw, thanks Anne. Sorry it took me so long to get back to you. It’s been a crazy week. Bad weather, etc. I’m just feeling normal and we now have more precipitation on the way. Yikes. How are things down that way? I noticed on the news your area was in the bands of bad weather too.

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      1. We had a nice snow a few days ago, but I think we’ll be getting mostly rain. I’m going to sit back and enjoy everyone else’s snow. Two friends in OK are expecting a foot of snow. I hope your white blanket doesn’t bother you too much.

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