One of the basic things to know how to perform for a gardener, even a beginner, is sowing. This is essential if you want to create your own plants, whether for the vegetable patch or the pleasure garden. But when the seeds are extremely fine, you can end up with bundles and consequently not at all homogeneous emergence. Here are two great tips to know at your fingertips to sow fine seeds as regularly as possible.
Homogeneous sowing: the advantages
It is very important that the fine seeds are placed on their substrate without forming clumps. In other words, the sowing have to be homogeneous so that we can get the most out of it, namely:
- Obtain a good distribution of the seeds at an equal distance from each other,
- Promote the growth of each plant,
- Benefit from an appreciable time saving since it limits the labor of thinning.
We must respect a interval of at least 1 cm between two seeds to offer them the best development conditions. This does not pose any difficulty with large seeds, but for the finest, you usually get cluster of seeds in one place then holes in another, that is to say a whole space totally devoid of seeds. However, it is essential to counter this problem because sowing allows you to obtain a maximum of plants of all kinds without spending a lot of money… on condition that the very small seeds are dispersed successfully.
Tips and Tricks for Sowing Tiny Seeds Every Time
The following solutions give excellent results!
Use a mini-seeder for fine seeds… or a salt shaker
The mini seeder is a gardening accessory essential for sowing very small seeds without forming clumps. It is therefore different from the seeder used in the agricultural environment, which is nothing other than a machine also intended for sowing seeds but on very large surfaces. For our small gardens, no need to resort to a big machine of course. A manual seeder for individuals costs at most ten euros.
The principle of using a seed drill is really simple since it suffices to place in the accessory the equivalent of two or three tablespoons of sifted white sand (therefore very fine) as well as tiny seeds, then mix well. The seeds are generally darker than sand, which is very useful for easily monitoring the germination process.
Once the manual seeder is closed, all you have to do is sow with a fairly precise gesture on a tray containing a layer of soil previously moistened, if possible with rainwater. Once sowing is finished, gently spray the seeds mixed with sand and place everything in a warm and bright place. When the seeds start to germinate, we visualize our future plants better, and we can then appreciate – sometimes with frank surprise – the good spacing between the small seeds. There is no package …
If you don’t have a seed drill, that’s no problem: you can just as easily use a salt shaker of good capacity, that which one generally uses at the table. It provides the same services as the seed drill.
Prepare pre-seeded strips with biodegradable material
You can now find in garden centers ready-made seed ribbons, but it is quite possible to prepare your own seed mats yourself with material that you necessarily have on hand, namely:
- A double decimeter,
- Toilet paper or paper towels,
- A hand whip,
- A saucepan,
- 1 tablespoon of flour,
- 50 cl of water,
- Fine seeds to sow.
You have to start with prepare a sticky glue while constantly mixing the flour and water with a whisk, in a saucepan over high heat until boiling. Let cool off the heat. During this time, we cut bands toilet paper or paper towels 4 to 6 cm wide on the desired length.
The cooled glue must be placed on the strip of paper, in small touches placed at regular intervals, hence the usefulness of the double decimeter. The required interval depends on the variety of the plant and is indicated on the seed packet. Then all you have to do is place a fine seed on each point of glue and then cover the pre-seeded strip with another strip of paper (blank this time).
Let the seed strip dry and then store it while waiting for the period chosen for planting it. It can be rolled up as is, around a cardboard tube. When the time comes, all you have to do is unroll it to be able to place it on potting soil and cover it with a thin layer of substrate (note that some gardeners do not cover ultra fine seeds).
Finally, tamp lightly and spray with water at room temperature (preferably non-calcareous) in order to start the germination process. Be careful to maintain sufficient but not excessive humidity for a few days. Toilet paper and paper towels being biodegradable, they will simply decompose on the spot.