Updated: Nov 1, 2020
Follow these top tips for successful sowing!
Sow at the right time of year. If sowing outside this is even more important as soil takes a while to warm up in the spring and keep in mind your location in the UK.
Spring can come a couple of weeks later in Scottish Highlands to Cornwall.
Ensure there is enough light. Place your seed trays on windows/greenhouses that get 12-16 hours of daylight.
Most seeds will require temperatures at least 15C to germinate, although check your individual seed packets. Keep your sown seeds in a consistently warm location away from drafts. Seed warming trays or electric propagators are available. Some seeds need a prolonged cold exposure, such as delphiniums.
Unless seed packets say otherwise, most sowings need to be kept damp but not soaking, which could cause seeds to rot. Remove any standing water from beneath pots to aid drainage.
Covering seeds with a clear lid will increase humidity and improve germination success. Fancy propagators are brilliant but a used strawberry tub from Aldi also works wonders.
You can also pop the trays into clear plastic bags (please reuse! Save all those clear bread bags).
Remove covers once seeds have sprouted to allow good ventilation.
Sowing at the Right Depth
Sowing your seeds too shallow or too deep can affect their germination and success. Refer to your seed packet for advice on each seed type.
Age of Seeds
Each seed packet will have a 1 year ‘best before’ date. Seeds may germinate after this date however germination may be at a lower rate. It also depends on the seed type – I’ve had 10 year old carrot seeds germinate beautifully!
Be patient too, some seeds can take much longer than others! Check the seed packets for further information.
Happy Sowing 😊