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mulched over direct sowed seed

Posted by newbie85 none (My Page) on
Mon, Apr 16, 12 at 23:49

So I built a new flower bed this spring. All the flowers are south facing so they get plenty of sun and good drainage. Soil is good and loose not compacted.

After planting my seeds I mulched over top of them. They have been planted for about a month and I've seen no signs of life. Today I read on another forum that the mulch will keep them from germinating due to lack of light getting in.

My question is if I remove the mulch after this long will my seeds start to or continue germinating? Imay be overly cautious or jumping the gun a bit. I just don't want to miss the best time to plant waiting on seeds that are dead if I need to replant.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: mulched over direct sowed seed

  • Posted by morz8 Z8 Wa coast (My Page) on
    Tue, Apr 17, 12 at 10:35

Newbie, not knowing what you have sown, a broad answer is that most seeds need water, oxygen, and proper temperature in order to germinate. Some seeds require light too but not all - a lot of seeds are fine covered after sowing - at the right depth - and your seed packet will tell you which need to be surface sown, which seeds will benefit from some light.
There is only a certain amount of energy contained in the seed for germinating, pushing up through the soil (or sowing medium) towards light. Planting seeds too deeply could cause them to use all of their stored energy before reaching the soil surface, buried under your mulch for a month and kept damp, some could have germinated and died.

I'm having trouble picturing how you could remove mulch and find your seed. If it were my garden, I would pull back the mulch where I want plants to grow, sow new seed, then push the mulch back again (up to but not over the crowns of the seedlings) when plants are up and growing.

I don't think anyone is necessarily born knowing how to garden, we all make mistakes along the way. Keep asking questions and enjoy yourself, enjoy the learning process.

If on your sign in line where your user name is - you could add your gardening zone or State, it would be helpful in answering future questions. We could be more specific to needs in your particular climate then - see my own, Z8 WA coast

RE: mulched over direct sowed seed

Today I read on another forum that the mulch will keep them from germinating due to lack of light getting in.

90% of seeds do NOT need light to germinate. Now you don't tell us what seeds you planted, what you used for mulch, how thick you put it on, or where on earth we are talking about - all vital info :) - so we can't say for sure about yours. But the odds are something else besides the mulch is wrong if none of yours have germinated after a month.

Need much more information please.


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