Not the stem, never handle them by the stem. Plant 1/4" deep and keep at 70°F (21°C) for best germination. I've had good luck with certain seedlings like basil. This commonly occurs with impatiens seed left over from last year, whether the storage conditions were good or not. Use scissors to snip the plants off near the soil line. Thinning Vegetable Seedlings. It’s too risky, and it’s a total waste of time to plant damaged seedlings that won’t amount to much. When basil seedlings are about an inch tall, thin so that each plant is two inches apart. These are general guidelines – every environment will be a little different. Although the plant variety and the number of seedlings to keep may differ, the process of thinning is the same for all varieties. Direct sow 2 seeds every 12", thinning to one when seedlings are 2" tall. Required fields are marked *. Once the sweet basil seedlings have been thinned, return to your regular water and lighting regimen for the next couple of days before transplanting. As these turn into basil seedlings, the pots become too crowded to supply enough nutrients to each growing plant! The recommended spacing varies between plants. Looks like you'll have a bumper crop! Plant 1/4" deep and keep at 70°F (21°C) for best germination. Basil is very frost and even cold sensitive; wait to transplant until nighttime temperatures are above 50°F. Destroy infected plants and avoid planting in that area for 3 years. This article has been viewed 139,252 times. of soil. We continue to offer high-quality, non-GMO basil herbs seeds. Do this carefully to avoid damaging the delicate roots. If you started your seeds in a small pot they will have a fair bit of room to grow. Some vegetables and herbs like lettuce, carrots, collards, basil, and radish have very small seeds. Here's and easier way: When the first true leaves appear, snip off the extra seedlings at the soil line. I have had luck with separating some of my seedlings. Thinning: removing some seedlings or fruits in order to allow room for others to grow better. Thinning and Transplanting Seedlings I am so pleased with how the seedlings are growing. Cover with a thin layer of vermiculite, water gently and pop it into a propagator. Thinning seedlings to eliminate crowding is also helpful. Seedlings should have at least two pairs of true leaves and be about 3 to 4 inches (7.5-9 cm.) Water your seedlings about twice a week. Keep the soil moist and make sure you remove any weeds. Is that possible, I soaked the peat moss, thx for your article. However, since you have many healthy plants, it would be wise to transplant them each to individual pots. Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. Basil Lemonade and Thinning seedlings! Fill a 7.5cm (3in) pot with seed compost, firm down and sow a few seeds of basil over the top – most will germinate so only sow a few more seeds than you need. It’s always exciting to see the little seeds break the soil. Basil seedlings before thinning Why Are Seedlings Thinned Out Thinning crowded seedlings ensures that plants have plenty of room to grow. See the “How To Choose Which Seedlings To Thin” section above to figure out which seedlings to thin, and which ones to keep. Seeds are best started off indoors from late February to mid-summer. But, here in the real world, planting seeds is not an exact science. Thinning is a process where you cut out the unwanted and weak seedlings that have germinated while letting the healthy seedlings continue growing. If you really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. When all the seeds germinate and sprout seedlings, we end up with the two or three plants in one hole. Step 1. Seedlings that were sown directly into the garden rather than started indoors should be thinned to the spacing requirements on the seed packets. Thin my seedlings?!? Transplant: Sow indoors 6 weeks prior to setting out. Fill seedling trays with fine potting soil or seedling mix. (The thinning is easier when they start about 1" apart instead of just being randomly sprinkled throughout the pot.) While vegetables typically have numerous types of seeds like organic, heirloom, GMO, etc. She earned a BA in Environmental and Sustainability Studies from Western Michigan University in 2014. Your email address will not be published. Even if you’re religiously spritzing your seedlings with a spray bottle, there’s no guarantee the water is making it all the way down to the bottom (especially if you sow seeds in deeper containers). Firm the soil over the seeds. Spritz soil with a spray bottle every day to keep moist. Do I thin them by leaving a single stem for each desired plant? Basil grows best in well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. Quote. When it comes to thinning seedlings, the sooner you do it the better. Can you explain the process of transplanting seed? Had to take lid off. However, it takes longer than simply pulling up the roots. Proper plant spacing is crucial for growing healthy plants (and harvesting tons of amazing food!). It will decompose and become like fertilizer for the surviving seedling. We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. Grab them by the leaf! Generally, no, herbs do not need thinning unless we are talking huge numbers. Thinning Seedlings by Trimming Our preferred method to thin most types of seedlings is to trim out the unwanted ones. [1] X Research source It's easiest to wait until the seedlings are tall enough to grasp. Purchase the Right Seed. Cover the seeds with just the slightest amount of soil. Disinfect them by dipping the blades into rubbing alcohol, or use a cotton ball soaked in rubbing alcohol to wipe the blades. Wait until the seedlings are 2–3 inches (5.1–7.6 cm) tall and choose a mild day to start thinning them out. Transplant basil seedlings to a sunny location in your garden but be prepared to provide some shade during the hottest part of the day to young plants. I know first hand that thinning seedlings can be a really touchy topic for new gardeners. Lauren Kurtz is a Naturalist and Horticultural Specialist. For example, for beans it's 4 in (10 cm) and for corn it's 1–1.5 ft (30–46 cm). It’s a wonderful, comprehensive and completely self-paced online course that will teach you everything you need to know about successfully growing garden seeds. Place 2-3 seeds per seedling container. Although this type of success can be a great thing, most times the seedlings need to be thinned out so there is just one seedling per hole. Can I leave the cut seedlings on the soil? 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