Starter trays

Discussion in 'Seed Starting / Propagation' started by AAnightowl, Jun 4, 2014.

  1. AAnightowl

    AAnightowl Young Pine

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    This year I tried some of those cardboard starter trays thinking they might be better than plastic ones. They turn into mush before you can plant your plants into the garden. It makes it very hard to transplant your plants. The lids do not stay put either. I won't be buying them again.

    I do like the larger individual cardboard pots, but not the starter trays.

    I had trays of each kind, and I like the plastic ones best. I can wash them out and reuse them for several years. The lids do not stay put on these either, but at least I do not have a pile of mush to deal with when trying to transplant my seedlings. They were both the NK brand since that is what the stores here had.

    How do you keep the lids in place for your starter trays if they are outdoors? I do not yet have a larger greenhouse, just a mini one. Storms blow them all over the place. And they do not take markers very well.
     
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  3. eileen

    eileen Resident Taxonomist Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    I tried those starter trays myself a while back and had the same results as you. I've vowed never to use them again as they were a complete waste of time. I too prefer the plastic ones but have only used them in the greenhouse for starting off seedlings so have had no problems with the lids coming off or being blown away.
     
  4. marlingardener

    marlingardener Happy

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    I use the plastic ones, too, the same brand as yours, nightowl. Since I start my plants inside on shelving with lights, blowing lids isn't a problem.
    How about wrapping them up like a gift package? A wide soft binding (strips of old sheets or tee shirts come to mind) that can be tied gently to hold the top in place. A 1" wide strip wouldn't shade the seedlings too much.
     
  5. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    I am blessed with a greenhouse, but I also keep the sides rolled up in the nice weather and wind does the same thing to mine, I use heavy plastic (greenhouse leftovers) and weight it down instead of the plastic domes that are available. Just watch that you leave a vent for the heat to escape. Sometimes it gets hot enough to cook the seeds.

    I bought some clearance 1/2 flats with domes from Burpee.. even though they were plastic they weren't worth the purchase, either. They shrunk and became deformed if they got too hot just sitting on a bench in the greenhouse.
     



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  6. AAnightowl

    AAnightowl Young Pine

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    Thanks for letting me know about the Burpee flats Carolyn. I will try to find some flat fabric scraps or something similar next spring. I have gobs and gobs of fabric in my sewing room... First place I will look!
     
  7. Sjoerd

    Sjoerd Mighty Oak

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    I have tried similar starter trays and just was not satisfied.
    I now use only root trainers for many plants veg or flowers.

    I still use trays of plug-sized cells to start many flowering plants and herbs off.

    But those dissolve-able things I just do not use anymore.

    If you are using them outside, I could imagine that you might want to pound something like an old tent peg into the ground on either side of the tray and then span a string or rubber band between the two tent pegs, thus holding the top in place.
    (If the rubber band was not long enough, just cut it open and use that).

    Would that help you?

    Wishing you lotsa luck, miss.
     
  8. AAnightowl

    AAnightowl Young Pine

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    What I did this year was put them into plastic grocery sack tied shut. They were white, so they still got light into them. I had them on my picnic table. I also have a mini greenhouse thing with shelves to set some of them on. Hopefully, I can add to that before spring.
     
  9. Sjoerd

    Sjoerd Mighty Oak

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    It sounds like you had a great solution to keeping the lids in place.
    Good work.
     

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