Petunia - one the most beautiful and the most "happy" annuals of our garden. And it pleases us not only bright colors and lush long flowering period, and the relative unpretentiousness. There is a small but a nuisance at this wonderful petunia plants - growing seedlings. However, many, many gardeners do not trust planting seeds in the ground, each season trying to get healthy and strong plants, growing seedlings on a windowsill right. And I must say that this is quite succeed.
Given that the finished planting all the same road, and a very large selection of seeds, let us and we will try to grow their own seedlings petunias. Moreover, the February and March for the right time. It was in late winter planting the seeds for seedlings not only vegetables (cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers), and annual flowers (tagetis, purslane, petunia). So, choose the seeds and proceed to this truly magical effect.
If you sow the seeds of these flowers in February, our petunias bloom very early, and in April-May, we will be pleased with its first buds. But if this is not possible, then planting can be delayed until March. The worst of it is not. Given that the seedlings need a lot of sunlight (and in February, it is not enough), March seedlings not only catch up with the February seedlings, but often it is distilled.
For sowing the seeds can be used small bowls with drainage holes, seedlings boxes or popular now, peat tablets. If the plant seeds in plastic containers, it is necessary to process the preservatives (e.g., potassium permanganate), and the bottom layer of wooden boxes put thick paper. Sowing the seeds should be nutritious and loose soil, a layer of which should not be less than six centimeters. For growing seedlings petunias suit different soil mixtures, more importantly, that they are not alkaline and slightly acidic. The containers for planting poured the ground almost to the top, leaving open ledges and a half or two and a half centimeters. Before planting the seeds ground carefully screened and moisturize.
Svetlovskhozhie petunia seeds (germination, they need light), so they are not embedded in the ground and even sprinkled and lightly pressed only for better contact with the soil. Since the seeds of this plant is very (even "chur") are small, they are mixed with dry sand for uniform distribution of the wet ground. Planting seeds in peat tablet on each disk in a special recess tweezers carefully placed one seed.
After that planted the seeds should be covered with paper or glass, creating a greenhouse effect (for seed germination need a fairly high temperature). Some growers recommend to use for sheltering non-woven (AGROTEKS, geosad), considering that under such protection created a more favorable climate for germination. They explain this by saying that since the relative humidity is maintained, and petunia has the ability to "breathe."
The most optimum temperature for germination of seeds from twenty to twenty-four degrees. Petunia known old varieties could settle for lower temperatures (but not below seventeen degrees). However, modern complex hybrids require a constant high temperature, humidity and light enough. At low temperatures, they simply will not germinate and the seedlings at a higher turn out too stretched and susceptible to disease. Water the seeds planted in any case impossible - they leave the water in the ground. To maintain a constant humidity they need to be several times a day to spray the way, the water spray nice to add potassium permanganate. In such a "right" conditions petunia sure to sprout, and it's going to happen on the fifth, the seventh day after sowing.
Care of seedlings
Immediately after germination seedlings nonwoven removed. If sheltering use glass or transparent plastic, it is removed gradually. First, the cap is removed once a day, leaving the shelters without shoots about five or ten minutes, and then every week intervals to increase until the seedlings appear on the first true leaves. Only then remove the cover completely. So the seedlings will be able to adapt to room conditions and will not fall, which, unfortunately, often happens.
After the appearance of the first true leaves of seedlings petunias dive, dropping them into individual containers (peat or disposable cups). Picking can also be performed in general, but larger container. However, in order to plant develops freely and be healthy, preferably individual containers. And when transplanting in the open ground it eliminates many of the problems. To the roots of the seedling has formed good at swordplay it is desirable to deepen a little (down to a pair of true leaves). Experienced growers point out that with this method of picking the transplanted sprouts not lodge and do not get sick, "blackleg".
For the successful cultivation of seedlings petunias neat watering needs - a timely and moderate. If you let the soil dry out, the seedlings will die, and waterlogging of the soil will provide a "black leg", because of which the small seedlings will rot and fall. Seedlings of petunia needs also in hardening. This can lower the temperature in a room by opening a window for ten minutes. Accustom plants to lower temperatures, it is necessary to protect them from the direct flow of cold air. Remember that fall is just to the room temperature, while the seedlings and the earth - no.
The first month of petunia seedlings grow slowly. But this should not scare you - young petunia increases root system. Month and a half and the aerial part of the seedlings begin to actively grow and develop.
Pawn abundantly flowering petunias - rich and competent dressing. Florists say petunia amazing "gluttonous", so start dressing in a couple of weeks after the pick. Fertilize the seedlings at the root and foliar feeding makes the leaves.
You should begin with foliar application as soon as the seedling will give three to four true leaves. Petunia sprayed two or three days, alternately changing fertilizers and growth stimulants. This can be any water-soluble complex fertilizer (such as NPK) but at lower concentrations. The main thing that the fertilizer containing nitrogen, responsible for the growth of seedlings.
- The seeds in the shell (usually expensive and rare varieties) germinate better in peat pellets.
- To prevent the "black feet" land for planting to be treated disinfecting solution or calcined in the oven.
- When the crust on the soil surface, it is necessary to loosen, to seedlings suffocated.
- If the shoots are beginning to stretch too, you can pour a mixture of earth, sand and charcoal.
- For early flowering plants need dosvechivat.
- For abundant bloom and lush bush, early seedling daylight hours should be reduced.
- If the roots fill the entire seedling substrate, an urgent need to transplant the plant into a larger container, otherwise their growth will slow down.
Of course, the cultivation of seedlings troublesome. Many people prefer to buy ready-made plants or risk sowing the seeds directly into open ground (perhaps ascend!). But you will agree that flowers are grown on their own from a tiny seed, will become the pride of any grower. And if it comes to the beauty of petunias, then, as they say, "it's worth it." And the reason for the experiment - extravaganza of color and a riot of color, which will provide petunia in the summer garden.