question about pelletized annual seeds

coengApril 9, 2013

Yesterday I received my annual seeds (nano geraniums, petunias, dahlia mix, angelonia mix, lobelia, and nicotania) and planted them in cell packs right away.

Some of the seeds were pelletized, which I had never seen before (I'm a newbie to seeding).

Some questions regarding the seeding process:

1) The instructions said to press them into the soil but not cover them. Doing so seemed to smash them apart. My fingers were yellow from the coating of the seed. Did I actually only uncover the seed from its colored coating and not damage the seed itself?

2) When the instructions say to "not cover them", I assume this means you should still be able to see the colored seed on top of the soil surface.

3) How many seeds should be planted per cell? This was my first time ever so I think I may have overdone it (except for the larger seeds). Some seeds were so tiny there was no easy way to prevent spillage.

4) I have my heating mat thermostat set to 75F and I covered my the flat of my 72-cell pack with a cover that has vented holes. I also have my T8 fluorescent light fixture (not a growing light, just a workshop light) a few inches above the cover. Are these the right growing conditions? I understand that light will aid in germination of these annuals.

5) After germination, should the seedlings get 16 hours of light per day as I do with my veggie seeds?

6) As they grow do you thin the seedlings out like you would for cukes/tomatoes and other veggies?

That's all for now. Thanks!

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thinman(Z5 MI)

1. I've had pelleted seeds break apart and it didn't seem to affect anything.
2. Right.
3. I usually put 2 or 3 in each cell. You can always pull the extras out when they are tiny. I use tweezers for this. Maybe if you have delicate fingers, you could skip the tweezers.
4. Sounds good to me, though I have never used a heating mat.
5. I usually do 14 hours, but for no good scientific reason. Some flower seeds do need light to germinate, though most don't.
6. Yep. Leave one per cell.

ThinMan

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 9:28AM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

yeah I was being rude...don't worry the clay coating doesn't harm a thing. You will be fine under more lights...lol

This post was edited by SouthCountryGuy on Tue, Apr 9, 13 at 20:31

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 8:08PM
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dowlinggram

You did not harm the seeds you may have helped them. That seed coating has to come off before they can germinate. They are only pelletized fir ease of planting. The coating has to be kept moist to dissolve so mist them daily. That should answer number 1

2) yes if it says just press into the soil that means that variety needs light to germinate

3) I don't know I usually start mine in a communal flat and transplant. The Geraniums, Petunias, Dahlias and Nicotania will have to be separated or some pinched out--I vote fir separation. The lobelia is fine with 3 seeds in a cell. I've never grown Angelonia so I don't know about them. You will have late Geraniums. I started mine in February as I do every year and they only have buds when I set them out in the first part of June

4) The mat sounds good but I'd lower the lights to an inch.

5) My lights are set for 15 hours but I don't think another hour would matter much.

6) I think I've already answered this

I hope you have great success

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 7:20AM
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