majors seed germination system 101

Discussion in 'Seed Starting / Propagation' started by majorcatfish, Jan 29, 2017.

  1. majorcatfish

    majorcatfish New Seed

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    before i get going i know everyone has their style and system on starting seeds, this is just my way and just want to share it. with the size of our gardens had to make a table the would hold 4 trays of 3" pots.
    sorry for some of these photos window 10 decided to loss many of the better one...grrrr

    first you need a good table you can control light, heat,moisture..especially during the seeds most critical time. germination
    DSC_0010.JPG
    for soil a good organic potting soil mix is all you need, your seeds have everything they need to get started built into them. save your money and spend it on your garden soil.
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    here are my best friends
    personally heater
    digital meat thermometer
    spring thermometer
    timer
    dc fan
    half bricks/ racks
    explain why as i go.
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    once you have sowed your seeds you need to control the heat in the soil. have tried heat mats, but they too unreliably for a constant 70-75* soil temperature.

    once you have sowed your seeds they do not need light, just heat<lights on for photo>
    but you need a area that will stay a constant temp. all 4 sides covered to keep the heat in.
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    will need to dial in the heater, this might take a couple hours hence the use of digital meat thermometer <left tray>.
    keeping the trays off the table will give you a better all around soil temp.
    DSC_0005.JPG

    ok now for the lighting question florescent or led..... whichever way you go use a good quality fixture. personally been using a 6 bulb t-5 highbay using 850 bulbs.
    it's all about watts, lumens, cri without getting totally scientific.
    the more watts= more lumens, plus the higher cri<color rendering index> the closer to true sunlight...
    led 235w highbay
    5k
    80 cri
    60-100k lifespan
    cost appx 230.00

    t-5 highbay w/850 bulbs
    6,500k
    85 cri
    30k lifespan
    cost appx 177.00
    limited on space this is why i went with a highbay.

    seeds are starting to germinate.....
    time for the lights to be on set the fixture around 5-6" above the seedlings and set the <timer> for 12-14 hours on. at this time you need to remove the front plastic cover, otherwise it will get too hot inside, set the timer to come on as you get up in the morning and off as you go to bed, at this time lower the front plastic the personally heater with come on once below your set temp.
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    will cull the leaser one once the third true leaf set have developed with a pair of scissors.<do not pull the one you want to remove, it might damage the tender roots of them

    once they start out growing the starter trays will transplant them into 3" pots

    watering...
    always water them from the bottom, keep the soil damp, not soggy. this where the dc fan comes in, air movement is very important. keeps algae from forming as well controls damping of the seedlings.

    hardening off....
    now after all your work, it's time to slowly acclimate them. a couple hours everyday to start with, leave them out more everyday. a week is a good guideline.

    a little cold frame greenhouse works great if your night time temps stay above 65*
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    after all your hard work you should end up with this...
    main.JPG
    dang windows 10 lost so many photos....again i apologize for a patch work of photos..





     
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  3. eileen

    eileen Resident Taxonomist Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    A very detailed and informative post majorcatfish. Photographs always help others so I'm pleased to see that you've incorporated them into your post.
     
  4. Cayuga Morning

    Cayuga Morning Hardy Maple Plants Contributor

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    That was helpful msjor. I will incorporate some of your ideas.
     
  5. majorcatfish

    majorcatfish New Seed

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    thank you.. missed a couple good points will have to wait till able to edit my posts...
     



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  6. mart

    mart Hardy Maple

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    Great set up there !! Plants are so inexpensive here that I almost never start anything myself !! For my garden I would need an entire room for seeds which I do not have !! Cool weather plants are here already as well as onions and seed potatoes !! I usually use my own seed potatoes from last season !!
     
  7. majorcatfish

    majorcatfish New Seed

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    same here the box stores have already put out the displays.. never had any real good luck with potatoes here, as for onions/ garlic thats off the list for awhile due to purchasing some infected garlic bulbs while back, so now have "onion rot" spores in my soil...
     

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