In The Seed Lab

It’s been such a miserable, rainy Saturday and I couldn’t think of a better way to spend it than with a mug of green tea in hand and transplanting my seedlings.

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I feel like a little scientist with all my labels, pots and other various equipment in the corner of my room; but I love it! I am still in shock that the majority of my seeds have germinated and I’m well on my way to having another great year of crops and flowers, but this time all started from scratch myself. Feeling very satisfied right now.

My eggshell herbs have taken a turn for the worst and I thought it was about time to transplant them into pots for the kitchen. As you can see, some of Parsley didn’t do well being left in the small container for such a long period of time. I only had 5 pots to fill, so will have to resume with the rest later in the week. As I’ve got so many I’ll definitely be giving a few away too, but the rest will go into the garden. I just need to section off part of the garden for my ‘herb bed’.

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I started by cracking away some of the excess shell before transplanting to the larger pots. I know the egg shell will decompose but I was a little nervous the roots don’t have far to spread, so a couple of them I’ve tried by removing the shell completely. This proved harder than I though, especially with the flimsy Chives, but fingers crossed they’ll settle into their new homes quickly.

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You just want to fill a little compost in the bottom of your pot and spread the roots down into it. Firmly press your fingers around the base of the stem and secure the seedling. Fill up the remainder of the pot with compost and make sure it’s nice n compact. The pots I have are roughly 7-9cm so will possibly need transplanting into a larger container further down the road too.

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My peppers have been magic so far; really strong and healthy looking. Again, these have probably been left longer than needed and I was worried they’d be a bit leggy, but they seem okay. I’ve 2 varieties growing; Sweet Pepper Gourmet and Pepper Cayenne. I’ve bought these brilliant containers from Wilkinsons for under £1 for 20 – they’re fibre and can also be planted straight into the ground as they are. Nice and eco – big thumbs up from me! So I got to work transplanting the Peppers into these to continue their root growth.

Make sure to be super careful when transplanting your delicate seedlings – don’t grab from the stem as this can break easily. I dug my fingers into the bottom of the cell and prized it up, you can then pick the seedlings up far easier. It’s the same as the herbs – compact the compost around them and secure them in place. I also bought a pack of 50 labels – with pencil – for under a £1 at Wilkinsons to help keep tabs on what I’ve got growing. No need to shop in a fancy garden centre for your basics.

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Once these have all been transplanted you can leave them to continue developing. These fibre containers are great as they have slits that run down the corners. This means you can tell when the Peppers are due another transplant as the roots will start appearing through.

I finished this task and then started sowing some more seeds. I’ve just sown Cucumber ‘Jogger’, the Chili seeds I got from Wahaca (late I know!) and some Rudbeckia ‘Kelvedon Star’. The corner of my room really is looking like a seed laboratory! Lets see how these all get on…

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