Growing petunia seedlings with your own hands

 Growing petunia seedlings with your own hands

Bright petunia is good for everyone: beautiful flowers of various shades, splendor, long flowering, unpretentiousness. However, not every gardener succeeds in decorating his plot with these popular flowers, the reason for this is the difficulty of growing seedlings.

Since the cost of the finished planting material is quite high, the device of a large flower bed will require considerable financial costs. It's better to learn how to get sprouts on your own, even if it takes some time. But, knowing from personal experience how to properly grow petunia seedlings, in the future it will be much easier for you to grow any other flowers.

If you want to get flowering plants earlier, start sowing seeds at the end of January.

It is best to plant petunias in open ground in mid-June, which means that you should start sowing seeds from mid-March. It takes about 12-13 weeks for the seedlings to get stronger, the root system becomes stronger, and the first flowers appear. If you want to get flowering plants earlier, start sowing seeds at the end of January.

Video about growing petunias

How to grow petunia seedlings at home: general recommendations

The choice of soil for seedlings

The right soil is one of the keys to the success of growing seedlings. For petunias, it should be lightweight, breathable, moisture-absorbing and nutritious.

The easiest way is to purchase ready-made seedling soil in the store. The advantages of this solution are obvious. First of all, the prepared soil is sterile and does not contain pathogens. In addition, it is a clean soil, in which there are no foreign inclusions. For seeds as small as petunias, this point is especially important.

It should, of course, be borne in mind that not every ready-made soil mixture is suitable for growing petunia seedlings.

Did you know: Often petunias do not germinate well because of too acidic soil. The “culprit” of this situation is high-acidity high-moor peat.

First of all, you should pay attention to the type of peat used in the soil mixture. He can be riding (red) or low-lying (black). The soil for growing petunias should not be too acidic, so you need to choose a soil based on lowland peat.

Did you know: You can lower the acidity of the soil by adding lime to it. A teaspoon of limestone or dolomite flour is added to one liter of soil.

The German soil of the Green World brand is well suited for growing petunias. It is also possible to use soil from the Russian manufacturer Pelgorskoye-M.

If you decide to prepare the soil yourself, you will need turf soil, peat and sand. In this case, the sand should be chosen not red, but river sand - white or grayish. Red sand contains too much iron oxide. Mix sand, peat and garden soil in a 1: 2: 2 ratio. All components of the soil mixture must be carefully sieved to remove debris, lumps and pebbles. After that, the soil should be spilled with boiling water or calcined in the oven to destroy all pathogens.

Sowing technique of petunias for seedlings

Petunia seedlings need good lighting. If you have the opportunity to provide the seedlings with additional daylight, you can sow as early as the end of February. Otherwise, it is better to wait until mid-March, otherwise the sprouts will be weak and elongated.

As containers for seedlings, you can use plastic containers (preferably with opaque walls), special seedling greenhouses with cassettes, or sow in peat tablets. Pour drainage on the bottom of the containers, on top - a soil mixture with a thickness of at least six centimeters.

On sale, petunia seeds can be found in two versions: in granules or in bulk.

In granular form, hybrid seeds are most often found. These are very beautiful ampelous, terry, multicolored and other interesting varieties. There is only one drawback of such seeds - high cost. In addition to the higher average price per bag itself, each such bag usually contains from three to seven seeds. However, it can be convenient for planting petunias in pots, balcony boxes and flowerpots. For a flower bed, you will need a lot of such bags.

There are many advantages to granulated seeds. First of all, petunia seeds themselves are extremely small, they are much smaller than a grain of sand, and it is difficult to sow them. But sowing granules is extremely simple. It is enough to put the granules on the prepared and moistened soil mixture and slightly press them in (you do not need to sprinkle it with earth, the petunia is sown superficially). The seeds are laid out a few centimeters apart. You can sow directly into pots or cups - two per cup. The seeded granules are covered with plastic wrap. By the way, granulated seeds give on average a higher germination rate than ordinary seeds.

But with seeds in bulk, everything is somewhat more complicated. Here, the inconvenience is offset by the lower cost. In addition, a loose sachet can contain up to several hundred seeds (this information is usually indicated on the package). In this situation, one of the following instructions will come in handy.

Option 1: Mix with sand

  1. Prepare potting soil and sprinkle it with room temperature water.
  2. In a flat bowl, combine the seeds with a little sand.
  3. Spread the resulting mixture on the prepared soil in an even thin layer.
  4. Spray the crops from above with water from a spray bottle.

Option 2: With tweezers or a toothpick

  1. Prepare a container of soil. Pour the seeds from the bag onto a white sheet of paper, so you can clearly see them. Prepare two toothpicks and a glass of water.
  2. Dip the tip of one of the toothpicks into water. Now it will be easy to pick up a petunia seed on it and transfer it to a container. Shake the seed onto the soil with a second (dry) toothpick.
  3. Sprinkle the sown seeds on top with water from a spray bottle.
Likewise, you can carefully transfer the seeds to the soil with tweezers.

Option 3: Sowing in the snow

  1. Prepare a container with soil, lay a thin layer of snow (1-2 millimeters) on top of it.
  2. Spread the seeds carefully over the snow. The point is that they are clearly visible in the snow, and if the seeds have fallen too thickly, you can redistribute them with tweezers or a toothpick. As it melts, the snow itself will pull the seeds into the soil to the desired depth. You don't need to water anything.

For all sowing options, the seeds are covered with plastic wrap from above.

Sowing seeds in prepared soil mixture or in peat tablets

The soil for sowing seeds should not be alkaline or strongly acidic. Loose, nutritious soil mixtures are used, which are able to retain moisture, but also not freeze at the same time, letting in excess water. A ready-made soil mixture is sold in stores, you can mix a suitable mixture yourself, taking two parts of well-decomposed peat, turf soil, rotted humus and one part of sand. Mix all the ingredients well, sift twice - through a very coarse sieve and through a smaller sieve.

Pour crushed expanded clay into boxes or pots as drainage, on top of expanded clay - large screening of soil mixture, fill the upper third of the container with fine screenings, leaving about 6 cm to the edge. Spread the seeds in even rows over the moistened soil and lightly sprinkle with water on top.

The soil for sowing petunia seeds should not be alkaline or strongly acidic

You do not need to sprinkle the seeds with earth, since they need light for germination. It is enough to lightly press each seed to ensure contact with the ground. If you are interested in how to grow petunia seedlings the easiest way, use peat tablets instead of containers for seedlings. They must first be poured with boiled hot water, and then cooled. Small seeds are carefully placed with tweezers in special recesses.

How to properly care for seedlings

The air temperature in the room for growing seedlings should be 20-22 degrees. You need as much light as possible (ideally, backlighting during the day). The substrate should be constantly moist, but at the same time, stagnation of water should not be allowed. Condensation on the lid or foil should be wiped off daily. In addition, you need to take care of hardening the sprouts. To do this, after sprouting, remove the lid for 10 minutes every day. Airing time is gradually increased. You can completely remove the lid or film after all the sprouts acquire real leaves.

Top dressing at the first stages is not needed, but you can strengthen the immunity of seedlings by adding Epin to the spraying water (a few drops on a spray bottle).

It will be more convenient for the plant to develop in individual containers, it will grow healthier

Seedlings can be dived when their height reaches 4-5 centimeters. Using a narrow knife, remove each sprout, pinching the root at a depth of about three centimeters. After that, each sprout is planted in an individual container.

The main problem that can be encountered when growing petunia seedlings is excessive stretching of the sprouts due to lack of light. You can cope with this problem when diving, by deepening the seedlings into the soil up to the cotyledon leaves.

Granulated seeds can be sown directly into peat tablets - then nothing will have to be dived.

It will be more convenient for the plant to develop in individual containers, it will grow healthier, and it will be easier for you to transplant seedlings into open ground. When picking, deepen the seedling to the first true leaves, so that a good root system is formed and the likelihood of damage to the shoots by the "black leg" is reduced.

Useful tips for growing seedlings

In order for a healthy, beautiful petunia to grow from seeds, the growth of sprouts must be accompanied by regular careful watering. When the soil dries up, the plants will die, and waterlogging will lead to the appearance of a "black leg", and as a result - to rotting and death of small seedlings. Fragile seedlings should be carefully watered at the root.

Top dressing is applied two weeks after plant picking

To harden a young plant from the second week, open the window for 10 minutes, thereby lowering the air temperature in the room. However, in this case, the sprouts must be protected from drafts and direct flow of cold air, the temperature of the seedlings themselves should not drop.

Do-it-yourself video about growing petunia seedlings

Top dressing is applied two weeks after picking the plants. At first, apply only spraying with fertilizer leaves every two days, alternately changing growth stimulants and complex mineral fertilizers with nitrogen content. In the future, you can add root dressing. Important little things:

  • sprouts need light almost around the clock, you will need to provide not only daytime supplementary lighting of seedlings in gloomy weather, but also leave a dim light for the night;
  • do not allow a crust to appear on the ground, otherwise the seedlings will suffocate;
  • when the roots of the plant fill the entire coma of earth, transplant the petunia into a larger container;
  • if you notice that the seedlings are too elongated, add a little potting soil;
  • for growing expensive and rare varieties, use peat tablets.

At first, petunia will grow rather slowly, do not worry - the plants will form a root system. In about 1.5 months, the aboveground part will develop no less actively.

How to plant petunia in open ground

At least a week before planting in open ground, seedlings must be taught to new conditions. To do this, the seedlings are taken out to the balcony or veranda every day, increasing the time they spend in the open air every day. Three days before planting, the pots are left to spend the night outside.

It is better to plant seedlings in the evening or on a cloudy day (not in direct sun). For seedlings, holes are prepared at a distance of 18 to 35 centimeters (depending on the variety). Fill the wells with plenty of water. Remove the seedling as carefully as possible from the glass, along with the earthen clod. Dip an earthen ball into the hole, sprinkle with earth and tamp it tightly.

Immediately after planting, the seedlings of petunias must be thoroughly watered.

The article was updated on 29.01.2018

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Petunias are sown for seedlings in late February - early March, this makes it possible to get flowering plants in May. And if an adult flower steadfastly endures the whims of nature and the influence of external factors, then diving of tiny seedlings of petunias requires patience and painstakingness.

Small, almost dusty, sowing material is not always possible to distribute over the soil surface evenly enough, therefore, petunia shoots look like a solid carpet. Soon, the sprouts will begin to compete for nutrients, light and moisture. Deficiency of at least one of the listed factors leads to elongation of seedlings, it becomes tall and thin.

The root system in such conditions is also not able to develop fully due to the lack of free space.

On a note. Diving is the truncation of the main taproot in order to stimulate the growth of lateral shoots. Also, this word is called the transplanting of young seedlings into individual or common containers, but of a larger size.

In addition, thickened crops are unevenly illuminated by sunlight, and there is no air circulation among the sprouts. And this can provoke disease.

Petunia sprouts from common seedling containers are subject to priority diving into individual containers at the stage of 2-4 true leaves. For the first dive, these can be disposable cups with a volume of 0.15-0.2 liters.

Seedlings of petunias grown by sowing seeds directly into separate pots or peat tablets can also be dived, but it is much easier to work with it.


Petunia

The very sowing of the seeds of this plant for seedlings is already not an easy task, which takes a lot of time. For convenience, each seed should be carefully picked up with small tweezers or a toothpick. It is imperative not to burrow or overflow the seeds.

Growing petunia seedlings is also not as easy as it seems. She can get sick with black leg even at the stage of germination, and it will be impossible to save your plants. Rot of the root collar of seedlings may appear due to waterlogging of the soil. Therefore, the entire period from sowing to the final transplanting of shoots, the soil should be supplied with water carefully (preferably from a syringe) and carefully monitor the moisture of the earth. Another problem is the size of the sprouts. They grow quite small, and for this reason they are difficult to dive. But if that doesn't stop you, go for it.

By the way, about the colors. According to many gardeners, it is really easier and cheaper to buy seedlings of any flowers than to grow them yourself.


Seedling care

In order to grow petunias from seeds and get seedlings like in the store and even better, it is important to provide the plants with optimal conditions for growth and proper care. Otherwise, the petunia will turn out to be elongated, weak and will not take root when transplanted into the ground.

How to grow petunia at home:

  1. Temperature. Before the seeds germinate, the room temperature should vary between + 24 ... + 26 ° C. After the first shoots appear, the temperature is reduced to + 20 ... + 22 ° C.
  2. Lighting. Seedling boxes are placed on the southern or southeastern windowsill.They should be there even if the seeds haven't sprouted yet. If possible, provide additional lighting for 12 hours. When sowing seeds in winter, lighting is necessary.
  3. Watering. Before seed germination, the soil is sprayed with warm water from a spray bottle. You cannot water it from a watering can or bottle, since in this case the seeds will go deep into the ground and will not germinate. After the first shoots appear, the seedlings are watered from a syringe or a special watering can for indoor plants with a narrow nose. The liquid should not come into contact with plant leaves. The soil is moistened as it dries with warm water. Do this in the morning or evening when the sun is inactive.
  4. Greenhouse. Before the first shoots appear, the seedlings should be under glass or foil. Every day the greenhouse is removed, the condensate is wiped off and the container is left to ventilate for 10-20 minutes. When the seeds germinate, the duration of airing is increased. Then the greenhouse is completely dismantled.
  5. Picking. It is carried out when the petunia has 2 true leaves. Use containers with a volume of 250-300 ml. Drainage is poured at the bottom. The rest of the volume is covered with soil. Seedlings are carefully removed from the common container, trying not to damage the roots, and transplanted into individual pots. Plants are watered under the root with warm, settled water. The plants are transplanted a second time when the root system fills the container (1.5 months after sowing the seeds).
  6. Formation. In order for the bush to branch well and form correctly, it is pinched when 3-4 pairs of leaves are formed on the plant. This stimulates the development of side shoots.
  7. Hardening. 2 weeks before planting in open ground, the seedlings begin to harden. It is taken out on the street or on the balcony for 3 minutes, then for 1 hour. Gradually increasing the time, it is left in such conditions for a day.
  8. Top dressing. There is no need to feed the seedlings before picking, but some gardeners add a few drops of Epin to the water for irrigation once a week. After transplanting into individual containers, petunias are fed every 2 weeks, alternating mineral and organic fertilizers.


Step 3. Sow the seeds

Lightly dampen the soil with a spray bottle, then lightly compact the soil. Spread the heliotrope seeds evenly over the surface, sprinkle them on top with a layer of soil 1-2 mm thick. This will reduce the risk of seed drying out when germinating at home.

Since heliotrope seeds are small, before sowing, you can moisten one of the tips of a toothpick in water and hook several seeds with it, and then spread them over the surface.

Moisten the soil again from a spray bottle or spill it with water in small portions until it is completely saturated.


Sowing seeds in prepared soil mixture or in peat tablets

The soil for sowing petunia seeds should not be alkaline or strongly acidic. Loose, nutritious soil mixtures are used, which are able to retain moisture, but also not freeze at the same time, letting in excess water. A ready-made soil mixture is sold in stores, you can mix a suitable mixture yourself, taking two parts of well-decomposed peat, turf soil, rotted humus and one part of sand. Mix all the ingredients well, sift twice - through a very coarse sieve and through a smaller sieve.

Pour crushed expanded clay into boxes or pots as drainage, on top of expanded clay - large screening of soil mixture, fill the upper third of the container with fine screenings, leaving about 6 cm to the edge. Spread the seeds in even rows over the moistened soil and lightly sprinkle with water on top.

The soil for sowing petunia seeds should not be alkaline or strongly acidic

You do not need to sprinkle the seeds with earth, since they need light for germination. It is enough to lightly press each seed to ensure contact with the ground. If you are interested in how to grow petunia seedlings in the easiest way, use peat tablets instead of seedling containers. They must first be poured with boiled hot water, and then cooled. Small petunia seeds are carefully placed with tweezers into special recesses.


How to grow petunia from seeds at home for seedlings

Many newcomers to floriculture would like to know how to grow petunia from seed. I was once such a beginner, and now, from my own experience, I will share with you how to sow, dive and feed petunias correctly so that the result is 5 points. In the article you will find my photos of seedlings at different stages of their development and a short video of 3 week old seedlings in tablets.

A few words about petunias

Petunia - a popular flowering annual or perennial plant from the Solanaceae family, common in the wild in many countries of South America and a relative of tobacco. In our country, this is a flower beloved by many gardeners and landscape designers, which is an excellent decoration for city flower beds and flower beds, garden and summer cottages, balconies and terraces. On open ground, the culture is grown as an annual, and as a houseplant, petunia develops as a perennial plant. Feature of culture - it is a bright and varied color of flowers, a pleasant aroma, abundant and long flowering, unpretentious cultivation, a variety of species and varieties, a harmonious combination with other garden representatives.

Petunia consists of a straight or creeping densely branched stem with a pubescent surface, whole dark green oval leaves from five to twelve centimeters long (also with slight pubescence), single flowers on short peduncles in the form of a funnel (depending on the variety, with different types , color and number of petals) and fruits - capsules with small seeds. The height of the flower bush is from fifteen to eighty centimeters. The flower propagates by seeds and cuttings. The flowering period lasts from early June until the first autumn frosts.

Petunia can withstand frosts down to -4 degrees

One of the main reasons why the plant is in demand among flower growers is its ease of growing and a minimum of time for care.

Sowing preparation

Preparatory work begins in the winter - this is the acquisition of seeds, planting containers and soil.

1. Selection and preparation of seeds

Experienced flower growers recommend purchasing seed material only in specialized stores. It is worth paying attention to the date of packaging and the number of seeds in one package. Only fresh seeds packaged in five to ten pieces (no more) are considered to be of high quality. The price for such a package is about 100 rubles.

With good seeds of petunias, nothing should be done before planting (no stratification and soaking of seeds in potassium permanganate). Before planting, I recommend sprinkling the seeds with a Chlorella solution (or any seed germination stimulant, for example, Zircon or Epin), perhaps that's all.

2. The choice of planting containers

Planting boxes can be made of wood, plastic, plastic. Small general containers ten to fifteen centimeters high or individual pots and cups, peat tablets are suitable. I recommend sowing in hot peat tablets. I fill the tablets with hot water, 70-80 degrees, it disinfects perfectly and in warm tablets the seeds germinate faster.

3. Preparing the soil

For seedlings, you will need light and loose soil with all the necessary nutrients. A suitable substrate is available from specialist retailers, but you can also prepare it yourself.

In fact, it is better to start preparing the soil already during the pick, and for the germination of seeds, fine peat is needed even without the nutrient component in the form of vermicompost and other fertilizers. Seeds can also sprout on a damp cloth!

Therefore, peat tablets are best suited.

Sowing seeds

1. Timing

Sowing dates depend on the variety of petunias and on the climate of the growing area. In cold regions (for example, Siberia) with a long spring, sowing is carried out in mid-February or in the first half of March, in warm regions - in January. Early flowering varieties can be sown last.

In order to have a flowering bulk plant in a pots at a summer cottage in Siberia in May, it is necessary to sow seeds from 1.02 to 20.02.

2. Features of sowing

Sowing diary, picking and feeding petunias

Sowing is carried out on the surface of a wet substrate. Small seeds are carefully laid out on the surface of the substrate with a damp toothpick, if the seeds are granular, slightly knead the shell with the same toothpick. Press the seeds to the ground quite a bit.

Containers with crops are covered with transparent film or glass to create greenhouse conditions. The first shoots will appear in about seven to fifteen days.

Conditions of detention

Before the seedlings appear, daily airing of the soil and moistening from a fine spray will be required. In the future, you need to maintain the desired temperature, humidity and lighting.

  • Lighting... Photophilous petunias need full lighting for twelve to sixteen hours a day. During short daylight hours, it is recommended to use phytolamps or fluorescent lamps. They need to be located at a height of twenty to thirty centimeters from the seedlings. It is very important! Especially if you sow in February.
  • Temperature conditions. Before sprouting, a temperature of twenty Elongated seedlings of petunia 1.5 months. Stretched out due to excessive heat.

three to twenty five degrees Celsius. In the first week, the seedlings are kept at twenty-two degrees, and later at twenty degrees in the daytime and at seventeen at night. Otherwise, the plants will stretch out.

  • Humidity. Seedlings need a high level of moisture. Under cover, this condition is easy to fulfill, and after removal, young plants should be periodically sprayed with purified water at room temperature.
  • Seedling care rules

    1. Watering... Regular watering in moderate amounts is carried out only at the root. Water should not come into contact with the leaves. For plants, both excess moisture and its lack are equally dangerous.
    2. The soil... Loosening the soil is a vital prerequisite for the growth and development of high-quality seedlings. It should be carried out regularly so that a crust does not form on the surface of the soil, which will become a dangerous obstacle to the penetration of air to the roots.
    3. Picking... The pick must be carried out twice. First time plants Petunia seedlings 1 month old, 120 ml glass

    thinned out and planted in individual small containers when one or two true leaves appear. As you grow, a second transplant will be required - already in larger pots or containers so that the root system is not cramped.

  • Fertilization... One to two weeks after the pick, you can start feeding the plants. As a fertilizer, it is recommended to use complex mineral compositions in liquid form (for garden flowering crops) or water-soluble preparations such as Fertik, "Solution". The procedure is repeated two to three times a month with an interval of ten to fifteen days.
  • Disease prevention... To strengthen immunity to various diseases, before planting in open ground, seedlings must be sprayed with a solution based on the drug "Epin" or Fitosporin / Sporobacterin. It is also recommended to shed plants with biofungicides every 10 days, especially at the initial stage of plant development.
  • Preparing for transplant... Seedlings are hardened twenty days before transplanting. Every day, the plants are taken out into fresh air, starting at one hour and gradually bringing up to twenty-four hours.
  • Planting seedlings in open ground or pots

    Pinching the crown of petunia, seedlings 1.5 months

    The optimal time for transplanting is the second half of May.

    The landing site is sunny, unshaded, without stagnant water, with a soil that is neutral in composition, protected from sudden gusts of wind.

    The depth of the planting holes is about ten centimeters. The distance between plants is from eighteen to thirty centimeters (depending on the species and variety). Planting seedlings is carried out together with an earthen clod. The soil around the plants is watered and covered with a mulch layer of humus.

    Types and varieties of petunias

    In floriculture, there are more than two dozen species and about seventy varieties of petunias. All varieties can be divided into groups.

    Development of lateral shoots of petunia after pinching the crown

    By the shape of the bush:

    1. bush - "Triumph", "Ultra", "Limbo"
    2. ampelous - "The Snow Queen", "Explorer", "Black Velvet"
    3. cascading - "La Gioconda", "Tornado", "Ramblin".

    By flowering type:

    1. large-flowered - "Sonata", "Pink Sky", "Velvet Parade"
    2. small-flowered - "Pink", "Yellow duck", "Picobella"
    3. multi-flowered - "Snow Globe", "Black Cherry", "Mirage"
    4. profusely blooming - "Sonya", "Milky Way", "Angora".

    By the type and number of petals:

    1. whole - "Unicum"
    2. terry - "Pirouette", "Sonata", "The First Beauty"
    3. simple - "Sun", "Prague", "Morning"
    4. two-tone - "The Most Excellent".

    By stem height:

    1. high - "Unicum"
    2. medium - "Aphrodite", "Glafira"
    3. dwarf and undersized - "Milky Way", "Celebrity".

    Strictly following all the requirements and recommendations, each grower will definitely grow high-quality seedlings and will be able to admire the bright and lush bloom of petunias from summer to late autumn.

    Read also: Zoning zones and basic assortment of Siberian plants

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