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PROPAGATION TECHNIQUES: STARTING ANNUALS AND VEGETABLES FROM SEED

by Marguerite

[Photo by Carole Dearman]

Using a Seed Starter System

I buy the APS seed starters with a growing tray of six or twelve 1.5-inch seed cells. Other sized trays are available; these are most convenient for most seeds. The picture on the left shows (from bottom to top): water reservoir, supporting pegboard stand, capillary mat, planting tray and greenhouse cover. The growing tray is raised over the rectangular water reservoir with the mat drawing moisture up to the bottom of the planting cells. The clear plastic lids maintain good humidity and warmth while seeds are germinating. I purchase germinating mix from the same source so that I don't have to worry about sterilizing soil. (One source is Gardeners' Supply Company.) The containers get ragged and grubby, but last for several years, if cared for and kept out of direct sunlight when not in use. I occasionally have to purchase replacement greenhouse covers because they yellow with age.

Setting up the APS system:

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