Seeds to sow now?

Nigella
Flowering Annual
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Nigella
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Joined: 11:58 PM - Apr 06, 2003

7:43 PM - Jan 13, 2004 #1

I got a small heated propagator for Christmas (holds a standard seed tray). I have an unheated greenhouse (bubble-wrapped against the frost) and my question is, if I sow now in the propagator, what are the best things to sow? How long do they need the higher temperature?
I read Salli's thread about a similar theme, so don't feel you have to repeat the advice given there! I'm just impatient to get started now that I have the means of starting off early!
Caroline.
P.S. flower and veg. ideas welcome!
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salli c
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salli c
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Joined: 4:35 PM - Feb 13, 2003

7:59 PM - Jan 13, 2004 #2

Right, well bearing in mind that they all call me impatient , this is what I'll be getting going in the next three weeks, although not all in the propagator:
Cleome - already going
Lythrum Salicaria - already going
Eccremocarpus
Viola (not in propagator)
Nicotiana
Erigeron
Cornflower
Chilean Bellflower
Knautia Macedonica
Malva
I like to get them going early if I can cos I only have one propagator and come March it's like Benidorm beach
I grew all these successfully at the same time last year and they didn't seem to be ready too early.
Details and piccies of all these plants can be found in Grow It - just enter a few letters of the plant name in the search box on the front page


xx-Sal-xx





xx-Sal-xx
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wannabegardener
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Joined: 10:30 PM - May 23, 2003

8:56 PM - Jan 13, 2004 #3

What about Aquilegia ? Are we still too early for sowing it ?
The only reason people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.
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Guest
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10:16 PM - Jan 13, 2004 #4

Basically any perennials can be sown now, although the more tender ones should be left a few weeks yet.
I usually sow most of mine in late autumn/early winter, about this time of year I am potting on these, sowing the next batch and then in March when I come to sow the more tender ones the first batch can go for hardening off and the second lot can be potten on.
Wanna - I sowed my aquilegias in Autumn, but I think you may have colder winters than me. Sow them anyway, they will germinate when they are ready, after all the self sown ones go on in ground in autumn.
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C.A.
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C.A.
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Joined: 2:21 AM - Sep 22, 2002

12:40 AM - Jan 14, 2004 #5

OOOO! Does that mean I can start sowing now too?
I was given a heated propogator for Christmas - I had asked Santa for one with a thermostat but he misunderstood and I can't control the heat myself. If I can start seeds off now there'll be plenty of time for failures and second attempts.
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PauleneS
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Joined: 5:07 AM - Feb 18, 2003

1:51 AM - Jan 14, 2004 #6

CA, sow em in 3 inch pots...can get more in that way...15 3 inch pots fit into a seed tray
Pegs

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salli c
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10:37 AM - Jan 14, 2004 #7

Oooh, really Dee Dee? Most perennials you say?
There's still space in my propagator ... not for long


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Nigella
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Joined: 11:58 PM - Apr 06, 2003

11:07 AM - Jan 14, 2004 #8

Thanks everyone.More questions- salli, if you're not sowing those in a propagator, where will they be? Have you got a heated greenhouse? And Paulene, i'm confused - how can you fit more plants in by using pots rather than a tray? Surely the surface area is the same, or less if the pots are round?
Caroline
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scotia10
Herbaceous Perennial
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scotia10
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Joined: 2:12 AM - Jun 24, 2003

12:10 PM - Jan 14, 2004 #9

You can have a week by week plan on what to sow if you visit my website.
If there is not enough there then shout!
Iagree with Pauline go for the small containers you can get more going at any given that way.
This particularly helps if some things germinate germinate quicker than others, you can remove them to cooler climes.
Word of warning it is a long time to planting out time..........have you got frost free places to grow on all these plants?
http://www.thegardenersalmanac.co.uk
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Guest
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12:18 PM - Jan 14, 2004 #10

I must start very soon
Louisa

Staff Sergeant Loopy
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PauleneS
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12:47 PM - Jan 14, 2004 #11

Nigella
I just meant you can start off more varieties. I have always found a 3inch square pot is plenty big enough for sewing most packs of seed.
So then you can get 15 of them into same space (15 diff varieties), then prick them out later into a larger home for growing on
Pegs
ps Dont forget to water your compost with a Cheshunt Compound mixture before sowing - it prevents 'damping off'
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DeeDee571
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Joined: 7:28 PM - Oct 23, 2003

2:55 PM - Jan 14, 2004 #12

I very rarely use additional heat. I find the vast majority of things germinate well enough without it, they just may take a little longer, which at this time of year is not a problem.
I use either 3" pots or small trays, 4 fit into a standard seed tray. I try never to sow too many of any one seed because I find that the thinner you sow, the better the plant as they don't have to compete too much, and if the weather is awful, as it is today, they can stay in the trays a little longer than if they are packed togther, without detriment.
Not all seeds or seedlings need frost free places, in fact some of them need a period of cold to help break dormancy. Most primulas, violets and hellibores, respond well to being left outside in a sheltered space, protected from excessive wet rather than cold.
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salli c
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Joined: 4:35 PM - Feb 13, 2003

3:35 PM - Jan 14, 2004 #13

Nigella - I sow some of my seeds in the propagator (in the house), some in the coldframes and some in the house in my "garden room" which has 2 south-facing windows and a big skylight, depending on the germination temperature shown on the packet.


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xx-Sal-xx
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C.A.
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Joined: 2:21 AM - Sep 22, 2002

7:47 PM - Jan 14, 2004 #14

Too late - I've sown 8 lots of seeds this afternoon (before coming in here). I've got three electric propogators - which appear to heat to slightly different temperatures so I've divided up my seeds accordingly and hoped for the best. They're all in 'small' seed trays this time, but may be Santa will buy me some small square pots for next year . . . or later on this year if this lot fail.
What's really worrying me is what if they ALL take off - where am I going to keep them until time to go outside!! but I'll stop worrying about that on the assumption that its hardly likely I'll get too many.
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