Hey, it’s Jason again for Fraser Valley Rose farm I wanted to make a video today on Seedlings and it comes from my previous video on how to start lavender from seed and one of the users there very politely Commented that putting seeds into the trays is the easy part getting them germinated is no sweat The next part is the hard part. How do you go from Germinating a seedling to making a great plant? So I wanted to cover some of those topics here First thing I wanted to say before I go into Transplanting and feeding and other things is that you have to make sure that if you’re starting your seedlings inside like I did That you provide sufficient light and air circulation To make a good healthy seedling to start off with if you start it in too dark of a place or without air circulation What will happen is your seedlings will begin to stretch and maybe I’ll throw a graphic up here are some etiolated seeds But basically they start to look yellow stretchy and it’s pretty hard to get their condition back if you start out a seedling that way so you got to make sure that Inside whether you’re using natural light or artificial light Supplemental light that you provide enough light and a little bit of air circulation to get them going And now what I’d like to do is go ahead and tell you about fertilizing and feeding watering Transplanting thinning and pinching so stay tuned. Okay A bunch of seedlings here and they are both thirsty and hungry and so I have to water and feed them and the way I feed them is I use a Liquid feed like this and this is just a dial a spray by Scotts It’s it doesn’t have to be applied this way. But basically you’re applying it at about half strength So whatever it says on the bag for fully grown like you’re using Miracle Grow or something like that Whatever it says for fully grown plants You’d want to go to a quarter of that strength to half that strength and you might even apply it every second watering If you can see the color of these plants, they’re sort of a light mid green They’re not so it’s certainly not overfed. I don’t overfeed my seedlings if I can help it You can see they might be even be a little bit on the hungry side and that’s okay with me I’m not trying to get them that bright dark green at least not in this stage I’d like them to continue growing on the light side the Composition of the fertilizer I use is fairly balanced. I think it’s a 20 20 20 You can even drop down that middle number that middle number is phosphorous and that’s phosphorus is related to stretch in your seedlings And so if you found something that was like 14 7 14, that would be fine to just give them a quick watering here Now the reason I’ve use liquid feed is for best control I want that if I see signs of deficiency if I’ve seen signs of problems with with the feeding I want to be able to respond to that quite quickly and liquid feed is released Immediately to the plants now you can use organics and that’s fine but if you use organic fertilizers the thing you have to remember is that it usually relies on soil organisms to break it down to make it available to the plants and Because this soil starts out sterile, it doesn’t have a lot of those soil organisms plus I want the best possible control I want to be able to feed it when I want to feed it I don’t want have to wait for those soil organisms to do that work for me So in my case, I choose the chemical liquid feed if you’re committed to the organic approach and that’s totally fine Good good choice for you then just make sure that you get the best possible advice on a liquid feed that’s going to be immediately available to your seedlings and Not have to wait for those soil organisms to break them down because I think you get better control that way a word or two on transplanting: You can transplant your seedlings when they’re small and just able to be handled by the roots Or you can wait until they fill up a whole cell And the way to get them out from the tray is just to squeeze lightly from the bottom or push lightly from the bottom to move the plug up and then Pull them up so you don’t do too much damage to the roots See this here is nice and well rooted. So that’s just about perfect for transplanting and In the pot here, you do something called dibbling which is just to make a hole. That’s about the size of the plug Push it in and don’t forget to label the soil. I’m using in there unlike the Seedling soil that I used in the tray, which is has no fertility in it. No fertilizer in this soil here I’ve incorporated a slow-release fertilizer You can see that sold under trade names like Osmocote or multi-cote or floracote “cote” is usually the term they use to say that it has some coating on the outside of the fertilizer to control its release so a slow release fertilizer in the potting mix Helps it to give a baseline of fertilizer to help it grow and you don’t have to feed it by liquid feeds so much As we’re talking about transplanting One thing I mentioned in my lavender video is that I can by mistake drop in More than one seed into a cell and so in response to that When you’re doing your transplant, I’m pulling one out here. You can see that this one here has one two three lavender seedlings now you can go ahead and Transplant just like that and you’ll still end up with a respectable pot of lavender or if you prefer to get more Plants just very gently here and try to do it Slowly see you can see that I’m not doing any damage Just pull them apart So you have one You have two and You have three Different plants there and because I haven’t done any root damage to them as I pulled them apart gently like that Those can all go directly to transplant Let’s talk for a second on the topic of pinching Seedlings now these seedlings here have a tendency to grow up as a single stalk Pull this one out here as an example, but you can see on this one here That it’s coming up as a single stalk and on many Annuals and perennials you’ll want them to go up as a as Multiple stalk so you’d like them to branch down low so that you get more flowers. So pinching is what you do is you just grab it between your thumb and forefinger and pinch Simple as that so there’s the top that used to be on it. And now this should in Response to that the flower should put out more branches down at every node where there’s a leaf. And so I will get more flowers in total and a better plant structure if I pinch off the top and that’s true of Lavender as well and many other plants is that if you do a pinch that you’ll end up with a better structure and more flowers All right That covers all of my initial thoughts on how to grow great plants from those early stages of seeding If you have any questions on this topic or other topics related to growing seedlings Please let me know drop those in the comments in the video and thanks so much for watching