year 2 plans, still have some questions

njitgradNovember 6, 2013

1) Looking ahead to next spring, what is the best time frame to start shopping for seeds (veggies and annual flowers).

2) I am looking for six STURDY trays (for my cell packs), not the flimsy/wobbly kind. Any recommendations? They need to be the type without drainage holes so I can water my cell packs in the trays.

3) I am also seeking suggestions for an inexpensive wheeled cart that will hold those six trays so I can wheel them outside onto my deck in the backyard every morning during the hardening process. It got cumbersome to have to carry out (and then back in) six flimsy trays one at a time. Any recommendations?

4) I need ideas for transplant containers for when seedlings outgrow their cell packs. Last year I used transparent 16 oz plastic party cups. This year I'm looking for cheap containers with a square base so they won't tip when I carry a bunch of transplants in one of the aforementioned trays. Maybe I'll start saving the bottom halves of milk cartons, or is that too considered too large? I've also been looking into 3.5" Durapots (link below). Are they worth the investment? How many Durapots would fit into a 1020 tray?

Here is a link that might be useful: Durapots

This post was edited by njitgrad on Wed, Nov 6, 13 at 15:24

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bugbite(z9a FL)

I will give you no answers, only comments :-) I shop for seeds when I get my Geoseed catalog, which was Aug this year. Some companies roll out their offering later, you have to wait. Sometimes I buy twice, fall and winter. Many perrenials or early spring plants do best for me if I start them late summer for the following year.
I will always use trays and pots with holes so the water can drain out and not be trapped and rot the plant. Then place in trays like shown in the link you provided.
Wheeled carts: Hmmm, don't know; check Harbor Freight, if you have one near.

This post was edited by bugbite on Sat, Nov 9, 13 at 16:09

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 12:28PM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)

I shop for seeds sometime in the winter when I am bored. Usually around now LOL.

I suggest trying 1020 web trays they are sturdy and is what I use to pack trays around. As bugbite mentioned I want the water to drain.

I use 1801 (18 cell inserts) or 1201 (12 cell) inserts. They run about a dollar each. I also seed in these as, IMHO, transplanting is too much work for nothing.

I can offer nothing on the trolley more than what was suggested. I pack 30+ trays out daily to harden off.

Good luck


    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 8:18PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Perma-Nest Trays are the sturdiest trays available. Not cheap but last forever.

For transplanting (strongly disagree that there is no gain from transplanting): 1801 Deep Cells or 4" square pots.

Cart: Wheeled cart with scrap piece of plywood tie-wrapped on each level. Holds 4 trays at a time on each level.


    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 12:22PM
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SouthCountryGuy Zone 4b-5 SE BC(Zone 4b-5 SE BC Canada)


Not to hijack this thread but am curious to your thoughts on why transplanting is better. After reading peoples comments on this subject I did a test last winter. While my sample group may be really small, all the plants I did not transplant were clearly more advanced than the ones that were transplanted, some substantially, and they flowered or set fruit first. I look forward to your comments.


    Bookmark   November 9, 2013 at 1:00PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Pull up all the "potting up" discussions on the forums for all the details and links to the studies but basically it is for root development.

The act of transplanting is what triggers the fibrous feeder root development. Plants that are not transplanted at that young stage tend to develop top growth disproportionate to their under-developed root systems.

Since the goal of growing seedlings for transplant is strong well developed root systems that will quickly adapt and do well and not big leafy plants with minimal roots, staged transplanting has been proven to be quite beneficial.


    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 9:12PM
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I ended up going to Harbor Freight and got the 24x36 polypropylene wheel cart for a great price just over $100 (they must have just reduced it this morning). It can hold all six of my 1020 trays.

Now I just have to design a form of wind protection that will surround the cart (but allow filtered light to pass) on windy days. Suggestions?

See link below for cart.

Here is a link that might be useful: my new cart

    Bookmark   November 13, 2013 at 2:48PM
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bugbite(z9a FL)

Smart move with the Polypropylene. Don't know about the wind protection. When I have an extreme weather day, I put the trays in the garage. Maybe buy some cheap dollar clamps at Harbor Freight and wrap regular screen around the cart and clamp it several places. That's a guess.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2013 at 4:32PM
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