Each spring I follow a scheduled routine for planting seeds in seedling trays and potting up mature seedlings in preparation for planting in the ground when the weather is warm enough. This is where I am at as off the 14th of September, plus some notes on when I plant in seedling trays and when I intend to plant out those seedlings.
This is my seedling tray planting thus far. I generally keep to this timetable each year, drawing on seedling planting records from previous years. Except for the potted-up tomato seedlings all are being heated using artificial heating. All are growing in a greenhouse.
- 2ND AUGUST: PLANTED ROMA, PINK FAIRY AND CHERRY TOMATOES
In a 30 cell seedling tray. When big enough some of these seedlings will be planted in the greenhouse but most will be given to family and friends in Melbourne (subject to COVID restrictions).
- 8TH AUGUST: PLANTED EGGPLANT, CAPSICUM AND CHILLI
In a 30 cell seedling tray. Will be planted in the main greenhouse around mid to late October. They are much slower to mature than tomato seedlings, they also have a higher early season failure rate.
- 15TH AUGUST: PLANTED PINK FAIRY, ROMA, ROUGE DE MARMANDE AND CHERRY TOMATOES
In two 30 cell seedling trays. These are the main vegetable garden tomatoes that will be planted out in the second or third week of October.
- 22ND AUGUST: PLANTED EGGPLANT, CAPSICUM, AND CHILLI
In two 10 cell seedling trays. All destined for the main greenhouse or given away.
- 8TH SEPTEMBER: POTTED UP THE 2ND OF AUGUST PLANTED TOMATO SEEDLINGS INTO 14 CM POTS
Will be held in these pots for another two to three weeks before planting in the greenhouse (or given away).
- 9TH SEPTEMBER: PLANTED EGGPLANT
In a 10 cell seedling tray. Did so as strike rate for the earlier plantings a little low.
As well I also planted lettuce and Pak choi during this period. But this is something I do on a regular basis for most of the year, so these plantings are not listed above. As yet it is too early for corn and zucchini seedlings, they will be planted in single cell seedling trays in two or three weeks time.
Seedlings in 30 cell and larger 10 cell single cell seedling trays in my propagation greenhouse. All are being heated artificially by either heat mats or Aquarium Heater Seedling Propagation boxes. The pellets on top of the trays are Iron EDTA snail bait pellets. I laid the baits as I lost a few seedlings to snails or slugs and I could not find the culprits at night.
Tomato seedlings almost ready to be potted up.
The seedlings from the 2nd of August seedling tray planting potted up into 14 cm pots. They were potted up on the 8th of September. I could have planted some in the greenhouse, but they will grow on better in these black pots as the soil in them heat up more quickly than the surrounding ground. Warm soil is as big a factor in plant growth as air temperature.
Lettuce seedlings in various stages of growth in an unheated styrofoam seedling box. I regularly grow lettuce seedlings for a good nine months of the year, only stopping in the heart of winter. Lettuces are ideally suited to being grown in these boxes.
Eggplant, capsicum, and chilli seedlings in 30 cell seedling trays. The strike rate for the eggplant was poor this year so I had to put a second planting of eggplant seedlings in.