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sowing mistakes

Posted by cygnus-x1 7b - 81 (My Page) on
Sun, Mar 4, 12 at 7:54

I sowed my first seeds (eggplants and broccoli) on valentines day. The broccoli sprouted very quickly while I was away for the weekend. When I saw them I vented the dome covering but I was unaware that I should have removed them from the heat. They grew very tall and spindly and are now somewhat twisted together and having trouble staying upright. The eggplants sprouted slower so they are in better shape. They are now off the heat and out from under the dome.

I think they have their first set of leaves but I am not sure as the leaves they have are still right on top and look like larger versions of what they started with.

So I have two questions based on my scenario:

How long (typically) does it take for seedlings to get their first set of true leaves ?

I'd like to transplant the spindly seedlings, is there a chance they will strengthen ? Is there anything I can do to assist it in doing so ? I have the transplant vessles and medium ready to receive them.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: sowing mistakes

I would wait until they outgrow the root space in their current container or at least until the plants are about 2 inches high or more. Transplanting is rough on seedlings, and the ones you're describing are still very tender. I have started sowing in larger peat pots so no transplant is needed. This way they grow up in the same environment until they're planted in the garden. Hope this helps.

RE: sowing mistakes

I respectfully have to disagree with the info next-generation provided. First because you never want young seedlings to get root bound, second because staged-transplanting is a normal and important part of the growing from seed process (many discussions here about this), and third because seed starting in peat pots is very problematic, especially large peat pots. Again, many discussions here about this.

Your broccoli seedlings may not be salvageable so I would recommend starting more while trying to salvage these. The existing seedlings need to be carefully untangled and transplanted now, individually into another container with a good growing mix, and transplanted deeply. Bury all of the stem and all of the growth upto just below the very top 2 leaves.

Water well - do not feed right now - and set them out of the hot sun in a cool location (60-65 degrees) for several days. When you see new growth they can be moved back under the lights. I hope you are supplying supplemental lighting? Normally takes 2-3 days for new growth to develop.

The same holds for the eggplant and they have a much better chance of recovering than the broccoli does.

Hope this helps and next time - cover off and off the heat and under the lights just as soon as the break the surface of the soil.


RE: sowing mistakes

i made the same mistake with my peppers this year and lost all my hot peppers I plan on restarting them tommorrow I thought that I was supposed to leave them on the heat untill the true leaves not when they broke the soil

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