Saturday, March 31, 2012

Seedling Update - Good News and Bad News

Two weeks ago my seedling tray looked like this:

Seedlings on March 15, 2012

Here are some shots from this morning - going from left to right in the tray - showing four columns at a time.  The full planting layout is here.

First and Second Columns: Tomatoes; Third Column: Peppers;
Fourth Column: Peppers, Basil

Fifth Column: Basil, Rosemary and Sage; Sixth Column: Sage,
Broccoli; Seventh Column: Arugula, Parsley; Eighth Column: Chives

Ninth and Tenth Columns: Chives;
Eleventh Column: Lavender;  Twelfth Column: Parsley
As you can see, the tomatoes and basil are coming up pretty well.  But several of the other pods look completely empty.  Are they dead or just slower germinators?  I have no idea.

Also, the Arugula is either falling over (as you can see from the close up below), or the leaves have become all white and singed looking.

An even closer close up of the poor Arugula:

I'm considering doing a second phase of new seedlings, but haven't gotten around to figuring out what to plant or how to plant it.  I don't think I would use the large jiffy container again, since I don't think it works well for a variety of plants that grow at different rates.  But if I don't use that, I have to get (or find) smaller individual containers and fill them with seed starting mixture.  Will have to give that some more thought.


  1. Hi Nikki,

    Do you still have the packets your seeds came in? They should say the expected time it takes for germination. Some seed types are very slow. That would be my first step.


  2. Melissa - most of the seeds that haven't come up seem to have a 14-21 day germination period. Since I started these on March 11, that could be the explanation. I will stay patient.

    What do you think happened with the poor arugula?? A couple are collapsed to the side and some others have turned white, curled up and died. Poor things.

    1. I would try the arugula again without a heat mat. Cold-loving crops like cooler starts.

      And yes, be patient. There's plenty of reasons why some seeds won't grow (age/quality of the seeds and so on).

      I have some seeds germinate immediately where they are expected to take a week or two, and others can take weeks. Mysterious creatures!

    2. Thanks - I will try the arugula again. Great point!

  3. Enjoyable blog Nikki and you have a great opportunity to create a fantastic garden! I'm in a similar position to you in that I have more plans than plants at the moment. It is daunting but I just think anything will look better than bare ground and walls!
    As for your ugly tree in the front yard... I like it!

    1. Well, you have an awesome looking start to your kitchen garden with all those raised beds. I'm jealous.

  4. Some look damped off. This could be from being too moist. Hard to tell from your images, but the Arugula looks like it needs more light and it may be suffering from damping off. The stem gets weak and eventually rots at the base. Again, hard to tell.

    1. Thanks Donna. I've transplanted them to containers and have removed them from the heat mat, but they are under lights. we will see if they recuperate. I am also going to start some new seeds and not give them so much heat. As you suggest, I may also need to cut down on moisture. Thanks for the advice.