Diary of an Average Gardener

Transplant Seedlings

– Posted in: Garden Projects

How to Transplant Seedlings

After you have thinned the seedlings (see how to in this postI want to Garden), let them grow until they have multiple real leaves. The first leaves they grow are called cotyledon. All of the seeds I planted (except the onions) have two first leaves and are called dicotyledons. They really don’t resemble the later leaves.  So, a good idea is to label the rows so you know where you planted what. This picture shows basil seedlings that have their second set of leaves. These are called true leaves as they do look like what the plant will look like. When the true leaves have sprouted out it is time to transplant into larger individual pots. This gives the plant more room and you will not run the risk of the roots getting intermingled. Here’s an example of what basil looks like with their first true leaves. basil for transplant

To transplant use clean pots that are big enough to eventually hold a mature plant. I use 3 inch pots. I use plastic pots, not peat pots. I don’t link the way the roots will grow into the peat.  Many nurseries use 3 or 4 inch peat pots to avoid customers not recycling the plastic ones. I reuse my plastic pots; I wash them and reuse them year after year. Any plastic pots that I don’t reuse get recycled.







transplant toolTo transplant seedlings, get your pots lined up with a little potting soil or the growing medium from your seedling tray in the bottom of each pot.To remove the plants from the growing medium, I use a big metal spoon. I scoop out a big area to insure I get all the roots. Then I gently place the scoop full into a pot. The dirt will be lose. Gently hold the seedling and gently jiggle the dirt down into the pot.. You will probably need to add a little more dirt to fill the pot. Add more dirt very gently. What ever you do….DON”T press the plant into the dirt. Pressing will most likely break the roots or the tender stems.  Just keep adding and jiggling the dirt down into the pot. Once you have the pot filled and the plant is sitting upright, you can gently tap the dirt down with your fingers. Just make sure you do it gently. Add more dirt if you need to. See, it’s not kard to transplant seedlings.

P.S I would have done a video of these steps, but I couldn’t hold the camera and do the transplanting at the same time! :)