The seedlings for gardeners are always pleasant chores: you need to prepare the seeds for sowing, prepare the soil, containers for seedlings, backlight and all this combined into one "composition". Weeks pass in anticipation of obtaining high-quality seedlings, but, unfortunately, the final result is not always the same as the gardener would like to see: it happens that the seedlings are stretched quite strongly. Why is this happening, how to avoid stretching the seedlings and what to do if it is already stretched? We will try to answer these questions as detailed as possible.Stretching tomato seedlings.
- Reasons for drawing seedlings
- Incorrect sowing dates
- Lack of light
- Excess watering
- Thickened crops
- Incorrect feeding
- What to do if seedlings are already elongated?
- Features of care for elongated seedlings of individual crops
Reasons for drawing seedlings
There are several main reasons - failure to meet the timing of sowing seeds, lack of lighting, too high a temperature in combination with dry air, thickened crops, improper feeding and untimely, abundant watering.
1. Incorrect sowing dates
First you need to strictly follow the optimal timing of sowing seeds and not rush to sow them too early, because, firstly, you can grow seedlings, and it’s still cold outside the window, and you won’t be able to plant it on the site - it will perish from the cold ; secondly, do not rush with sowing seeds if you do not have any backlight.
2. Lack of light
Lack of light is almost the main reason why seedlings are pulled out: plants are drawn to a light source, as a result of which the stalk becomes long, thin and fragile. Given this, backlight lamps must be installed and turned on both in the morning and in the evening, and in cloudy weather - even during the day.
3. High temperature
Another reason is high temperature; one should clearly know that at high temperature the above-ground part develops intensively, and the root system grows weaker, plants stretch out. High temperature (at the level of 23-24 degrees of heat) in the room can be maintained only until the shoots appear on the soil surface, and immediately after that the temperature must be lowered to 14-16 degrees to allow the seedlings to develop fully and form as an aerial part , and the root system. After 8-10 days, the temperature can be raised again, on average up to 19-21 degrees above zero. If you want the seedlings to develop at the ideal temperature for it, then imitate the external conditions (that is, try to make the temperature at night 4-6 degrees lower than the daytime temperature).
4. Excessive watering
Excessive watering is a good reason to draw seedlings. Plants are especially strongly drawn out at a combination of high temperature and excess humidity. It must be remembered that 5-6 days after emergence of seedlings on the soil surface, seedlings can not be watered at all, then watering should be done once every 5-6 days, trying to well soak the soil. If you see that the earthen lump dries faster, then watering can be done more often, and vice versa, if after five days the soil does not start to dry out and feels moist to the touch, then you can wait a while with watering.
5. Thickened crops
Too frequent crops - here there is a banal competition between plants: they all strive to overtake each other, and therefore they are stretched. If seedlings have already appeared, they are dense, but still small, although it is already noticeable that the stems are longer than expected, then it is necessary to pick seedlings, preferably in separate cups.
If you did not calculate the correct number of seeds and the seedlings began to stretch later, when they got real leaves, then you can carefully remove one or two lower leaves - this often helps. The fact is that leaflet removal is a shock state for a plant, it should stop growing in height and begin to grow, as they say, in breadth, as a rule, the root system develops more actively, and the stalk becomes thicker. After 6-8 days, the seedlings can again begin to stretch, then the procedure can be repeated and removed one more leaf.
6. Incorrect feeding
It is necessary to clearly understand that at the initial stage of their growth and development, seedlings no longer need nitrogen fertilizers, but phosphorus and potash. Fertilizers containing only nitrogen should be applied after 10-12 days.
What to do if seedlings are already elongated?
It is perfectly permissible to plant overgrown seedlings in the ground, but only after making the holes deeper and placing the seedlings in them at an acute angle (40-45 degrees), directing the roots to the south and covering the plant with moist soil to the leaf blades. This method of planting will allow plants to form an additional root system on a stem immersed in the soil, then the stem will straighten and the plant will grow stronger.
If the seedlings are stretched out and it’s still cool outside the window and you can’t plant the plants in the ground, then you need to reduce watering to a minimum and reduce the temperature by 5-7 degrees. These actions will slow down the development of seedlings, the stalk will slightly fade, become more malleable and it can be very carefully bent with a ring and sprinkled with soil. It is also permissible to add soil to the container with seedlings, if the walls of the container allow this (it is possible until the first leaves). This will also contribute to the formation of an additional root system on the stem, and seedlings at the time of planting on the beds will be stocky and strong.
In addition to the well-known agricultural practices that we have described, you can take advantage of the achievements of modern industry, for example, treat seedlings with a growth regulator, such as an Athlete. This regulator stimulates the growth and development of the root system, makes the stalk stocky, not allowing it to stretch. Growth regulators can be sprayed with plants, and watering under the root is allowed at the first signs of seedling stretching.
Features of care for elongated seedlings of individual crops
These were general techniques that allowed us to restore the normal appearance of seedlings, however, a number of cultures have their own characteristics, which should also be known.
Tomatoes very well form additional roots that develop on a stem buried in the soil, so this seedlings can even be cut into pieces and rooted in moist soil or a glass of water. Usually, the crown with a part of the stem 4-5 cm long is cut off from the elongated tomato seedlings and a part of the remaining stem is separated from the root system. Both parts are rooted in water or soil - the result is normal plants.
Pepper seedlings, unfortunately, cannot form an additional root system on the stem, in this regard, the method of planting elongated seedlings obliquely or trying to root the crown will not work. So that after planting the elongated seedlings of pepper, it gets stronger in a new place and begins to develop in width, it is necessary to pinch the crown of the stalk.
When planting or picking, the elongated seedlings can be buried in the soil, which will allow the seedlings to hold firmly in the ground, and possibly form a new root system and develop normally in the future.
Cucumbers, zucchini, pumpkin, melon, watermelons
The stalk of these crops is flexible, when stretching its seedlings, when planting in the soil, you can easily collapse a ring, press this ring to the soil and fill it with moist and nutritious soil.
Seedlings of cabbage
When pulling cabbage seedlings, it is necessary to pinch the tip of the root (about 0.5 cm) and then plant the seedlings in the ground, deepening the plant to cotyledon leaves. After 8-10 days, seedlings must be fed with potassium sulfate (8-10 g per square meter) or wood ash (150 g per square meter).Drawing seedlings.
Elongated seedlings petunias and carnations you can safely dig into cotyledon leaves and pinch their tops. With a very strong pulling of seedlings, petunias can be acted like with tomatoes - cut off the tops and root them in water or soil.
At the elongated seedlings viola, lobelia, snapdragon you can pinch the tops and shorten the root system by ten percent, after which the plants can be planted in a permanent place.
Seedlings rose stock and seedlings marigold it is often stretched even for no apparent reason, it is possible to plant such seedlings without any action with it, as a rule, the seedlings continue to develop fully in a new place.
So, so that the seedlings do not stretch, you need to follow simple rules: use full seed material, preferably sanitized, for sowing; apply loose, nutritious and disinfected soil; observe the optimal distance already when planting seeds and of course, do this in the future - when picking seedlings; Do not rush with sowing, place containers with seedlings on the southern windowsill and use backlight lamps for seedlings; maintain optimal soil temperature and humidity; timely and correct fertilizer application.
If you know other reasons why the seedlings are drawn, and how to eliminate this phenomenon, then write about it in the comments, it will be useful for everyone to learn something new.