With a sowing calendar you will not miss the right time for sowing. However, for strong plants to develop from seeds requires a certain amount of sensitivity and the right accessories. Our professional tips give you the answers to the 10 most important questions about sowing.
Find out how strong young plants grow from plant seeds
When you can start sowing depends largely on the plant species and variety. However, if you look at the sowing calendar, you will see that there is something to sow every month. Vigorous plant material from our own rearing is one of the many results that a hobby gardener appreciates. Traditionally, 200 years ago, people still lived from agriculture and were at home in nature. Cultivating crops was a valuable commodity that was passed down from generation to generation. Breeding has resulted in more and more varieties, but knowledge about tillage, choice of variety and procedure is being lost more and more. Even today, it is always a fascinating experience to experience the development from the seed to the finished plant. But how do you sow correctly, which temperatures are important and which factors should you consider for successful cultivation ? With the right knowledge about the variety of new varieties, you are guaranteed to succeed in plant cultivation. Find out below how strong young plants for your own garden are grown from seeds and which technical terms you need to know on the subject of seeds and cultivation.
The five most important growth factors
Why is there a sowing calendar?
Depending on the season, you can spread different plant seeds. Many species can be sown outdoors from mid-May, while others require low temperatures to germinate. So that you always know the right time to sow, you can find more information in the sowing calendar. This gives you an overview of the variety of seeds and shows whether direct sowing or a pre -culture is recommended.
Vegetable Sowing Calendar
High-quality seeds, ideal soil conditions and the right time to sow seeds — learn everything from sowing to harvesting vegetable plants.
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What does preculture mean?
Some plant seeds require consistently warm conditions to germinate successfully. You can only ensure this on the windowsill, in the cold frame or in the greenhouse. Applying these seeds directly outdoors would result in poor germination. Therefore, preferring warmth -loving plants such as tomatoes, peppers, aubergines, cucumbers and summer flowers is the best way to get vigorous plants. So this method means early application of heat-requiring seeds on the windowsill. Here you sow vegetables such as tomatoes in planting bowls or directly in pots in the house and cover them with foil. Regular sprayingof the substrate is an essential prerequisite for cultivation. As soon as the seeds germinate, you can keep the seedlings a little cooler indoors. This process gives you strong planting material that leads to bountiful harvests. For certain types of plants, the growing season outdoors is too short to achieve good yields by direct sowing. Similar to the heat-loving vegetables, there are summer flowers or exotic plants that germinate indoors and can only grow in the garden in summer.
When does direct sowing make sense?
You can sow less sensitive plant seeds directly into the ground. It is important that you do not sow too early, because the success of your plant cultivation depends to a large extent on the optimal conditions. This means that the soil should be dry and finely crumbly. Temperatures that are too low at night can also prevent uniform germination. For example, nasturtiums, radishes, carrots, peas, beans, beetroot, spinach or lamb’s lettuce are suitable for direct sowing in the garden bed. If necessary, you can thin out specimens that are too close together.
What do I need for sowing?
In addition to the high-quality seeds, you should have the following materials in stock:
- Cultivation bowls, flat vessels, plant bowls
- high-quality growing soil
- fine sand
- water sprayer
- prick stick
- Labels for marking the seeds
Plant growing accessories
Unless you have an indoor greenhouse, it is easily possible to cover the seeds with cling film. In this way you increase the humidity and the plant seeds germinate faster. It is important that you regularly remove the foil to air it and remove it completely as soon as the plant seed has germinated. Moistening the young plants with the water sprayer promotes vitality.
Which substrate do I need for sowing?
Always use special potting soil when sowing in preculture. The loose and air-permeable structure of this substrate optimizes germination, it remains evenly moist and waterlogging is prevented. With a low content of nutrients, the special soil is ideal for sowing and propagating cuttings. In addition, the special soil is free of weed seeds and pathogens and the pupils get the best starting conditions.
When sowing directly outdoors, spread a 3 to 4 cm layer of seed compost on the prepared beds, make the seed furrows and place the seeds in the culture compost.
Which factors are important for successful seedling propagation?
- The right time for the respective seed
- sufficient amount of light
- Quality seed with good germination
- high-quality growing soil
- correct sowing depth
- optimum temperature for germination
- even doses of water
How deep is the seed sown?
The sowing depth basically depends on the plant species. Larger seeds such as those of peas or beans are sown about 2 cm deep. Fine seeds like those of carrots are planted only 0.5 cm deep in the soil.
The basic rule is: the optimal sowing depth is always twice the seed thickness. You can only achieve high yields if you pay attention to the sowing depth.
Our gardening tip: mix fine seeds with some dry sand or sawdust. In this way you achieve an even distribution of the seed
What are light germs?
For some seeds it is important that they are not covered with substrate because they need light to germinate. The seed is only placed on the potting soil and pressed down with a piece of wood. The same procedure is used for sowing outdoors. Here it is particularly important that the soil in the garden is finely crumbly. Well-known representatives of the group of light germinators are flowers such as forget-me-nots or coneflowers and carrots, lettuce, dill, savory, marjoram and sage.
What is pricking?
If germination is successful, the seedlings will be densely packed. For rapid growth, it is important that the young plants are isolated. To do this, carefully take the plants apart and plant the small plants individually in small pots or so-called jiffys. The compressed spring pots are practical aids for growing plants at home. Basically, pricking out gives the plants more space, the roots branch out better and thus develop a strong root ball. This is the best prerequisite for strong plants.
What is meant by the term «hardening»?
Just a few days after pricking out, the young plants establish themselves in their new containers. After a further 2 to 3 weeks the seedlings have developed into strong plants. Now you can put the plants in a cooler place with 10 to 15 °C. However, sufficient light is important. This gradual acclimatization to field conditions is called hardening. On days with temperatures above 15 °C, place your plants in a shady and wind-protected place outdoors. Ideally, the plants are left indoors overnight. This transition phase strengthens the homegrown treasures and promotes resilience to outdoor conditions.
Our gardening tip: Ideally, hardening of seedlings can also be done in raised beds or cold frames with a cover. Here, too, it is important that you protect your young plants from excessive sunlight.
Growing plants from seeds is a fascinating experience. Also ideal for children to experience the journey from seed to harvest of vegetables. More and more people also appreciate the cultivation of vegetables in the city and are amazed at the bountiful harvest. Choose in stores or online according to your preferences : certified seeds, old varieties or organic seeds. Read more about this in our Urban Gardening blog. Surprise your friends or neighbors with a selection of seeds — a gift that will give lasting pleasure and will be remembered for a long time.