An efficient seedling factory
There are many reasons why raising seedlings in a Harvst Sprout is more beneficial than direct sowing in your vegetable beds, especially at this time of year. A Sprout can make your garden so much more efficient if you use it to propagate – making it an efficient seedling factory.
Seeds and seedlings need a lot of attention. Bigger plants cope better with less than ideal conditions but a seedling might refuse to grow if the slightest thing isn’t to their liking. They require the right amount of moisture, light and an optimal temperature to grow well and this is very difficult to regulate when sowing directly in the ground.
Some plants like chilli, peppers and aubergines need a very long time to mature. They are also tender plants which means that they don’t cope well with cold temperatures and can’t be planted outside until the risk of frost is over.
Therefore, the only way to get a harvest is to sow early and care for the plants in a protected and warm place, until they can be planted outside. These types of plants are often raised indoors, but there are challenges to that too.
Challenges of growing in your home
Firstly, there is not enough light indoors, so a grow light is almost certainly a ‘must-have’ but can not fully replace the sun. Secondly, the air is often too dry in centrally heated homes which makes pests, such as spider mites thrive. The biggest problem of all is possibly the lack of space. It’s hard to keep plants inside your home from January till the beginning of June and not upsetting other members of the family with your home-garden takeover!
Sowing early in your Harvst Sprout
Sowing early in trays, and then planting outside extends the season for plants such as lettuce, beetroot and herbs. Doing it this way extends the growing season as you can plant outside as soon as the conditions are right – which is when you would normally have started to sow. Like this, you can extend your growing season by 4-6 weeks depending on the crop!
Using a Harvst mini-greenhouse as a propagator
Although it’s best to attend to your plant babies every day, you can program your Sprout mini greenhouse to automatically take care of them when you can’t. Watering, temperature control and light levels can all be set to the exact specifications required.
To germinate, seeds require warm temperatures. The Sprout is fitted with heaters, which keep the temperature up to levels perfect for germinating most seeds.
Your Sprout will provide a lot of seedlings in a small area that is super easy to manipulate and control, creating the optimal growing conditions. It makes growing food incredibly efficient in terms of space and time, whilst giving you the best seedlings you have ever seen!
Successional sowing can be made much more efficient by using a Sprout as a seedling factory. You can sow in a tray and plant out strong seedlings when you would have otherwise sown the seeds in the ground. Therefore saving many weeks of work as you will put seedlings in your outdoor beds instead of sowing!
Another benefit of planting out seedlings when they’re bigger is that you can get the exact spacing and design that you have in mind rather than erratic germination which often happens when sowing outdoors. You can also plant the seedling deeper, making it a more robust plant. Brassicas and tomatoes both benefit from being planted deeper.
A controlled environment
The optimum growing conditions in a Sprout mini-greenhouse mean that you’re more likely to have success with your plants, and it does the hard work for you! A Sprout provides protection whilst making it very easy for you to control the temperature, moisture and light. When you can tailor the growing environment you end up with the strongest and healthiest seedlings, which will turn into the best plants. Check out our Mini Greenhouse range.