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Seedling moving

Posted by bbfan10 5 (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 29, 11 at 19:19

I've have a bunch of seedlings growing in my house that I started from anywhere from last fall through the winter. Some of them are large, some are small, and some just sprouted. I'll list them.

The large ones or the fast growing ones are: iris, hardy hibiscus, rose of Sharon, and Katsura (even though the Katsura are really slow, they still have a good 2 plus inches of growth and about three sets of true leaves.)

I have a bunch of rhododendron seedlings but they're still pretty small, about an inch at the tallest. They have about two sets of true leaves.

I just tried sowing some crabapple seeds that I found on a tree and they are just starting to sprout.

I have yet to see any cone flower, bee balm, or tithonia emerge. I sowed them last week along with the crabapple seeds.

Spring has just begun and it is finally starting to warm up. It's been in the 40s and 50s during the day and drops down into the 30s at night. It's been pretty windy lately too.

Should I try transplanting them now? Or should I move my operation to the porch where they are protected by the wind? The porch is all windows except for one wall. It is west facing and is mostly in the shade. It does get morning sun, but it stays around 50 degrees during the day, and I don't know how far it drops at night. The plants have stayed at room temperature for months. Sooo what do you think?

Thank you :)

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Seedling moving

Very cool seeds to start!

I would wait until you stay above freezing at night. A frost will be okay, but all your plants are used to growing in much warmer temps and I think the shock would kill them.

I would wait a few more weeks and then gradually start hardening them off. If the coneflowers and other misc pern. have not germinated yet, you can toss them outside and winterwsow them. There are a lot of great info on the wintersowing forum.

Good luck


RE: Seedling moving

I second Keriann.

First, you wouldn't want to just transplant them. They need to be hardened off. With the slow-growing varieties, like the rhododendron, etc. there is no rush to put them outside. After caring for them for so long, make sure that they can handle the intensity of the sun, and the extremes of the cold nights.

They should be hardened off over a period of no less than one week. Put them in a shady spot for an hour or two the first day, then gradually increase the amount of sun/time they get each day. Eventually, they will be outside all day, and only come in at night (when the temps are below freezing, although you might want to keep them inside except for when temps are in the upper 30's or higher). A 35 degree night, without protection can really shock the plant if not properly prepared for it.

Second, after you transplant them, check on them regularly to look for signs of stress. And if a really cold night is forecast, cover them up over night to protect them.

RE: Seedling moving

Alright guys. Thank you very much for your input. I guess I'm just going to leave them inside for maybe a week or two. Let it get warmer out. Today was a beautiful day, but apparently there's snow expected for tomorrow? Thanks again :) and enjoy the warmer weather :)

RE: Seedling moving

Looks like you are in zone 5. I am in zone 7 and I don't dare to bring my baby plants out until May. They are calling for 7 inches of snow in northeast.

RE: Seedling moving

Mother nature played a very harsh April fool's day joke on the northeast yesterday. We only accumulated about two inches, but they melted within the first couple of hours.... Funny stuff....

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