Seedlings in diapers – an original way to save space
Seedlings in diapers are an unusual and interesting way of germinating seeds, which has gained immense popularity among summer residents and gardeners. With this method, you can grow strong and healthy seedlings of tomatoes or other vegetable crops without occupying all the windowsills with cups and containers with seedlings. This growing technique is new, so when using it, you need to take into account all the subtleties and nuances..
Seedlings in diapers – features of the method
The diaper method of growing seedlings is a versatile technique that is suitable for both vegetables and ornamental plants. The affordable design takes up a minimum of space on the windowsill, allowing you to compactly place all crops that would have previously occupied the entire balcony.
Diapers are compact bundles made from plastic wrap or fabric materials, as well as other materials at hand. They got this name due to the principle of “wrapping” for plant seeds. This design is very simple, and its production does not take much time..
The main advantages of diaper seedlings:
- saving space when sowing seed;
- the minimum amount of nutrient substrate or its complete absence;
- ease of diving of young seedlings;
- no risk of infection with black leg and other diseases with which the seedlings become infected through the soil;
- ease of seedling germination control;
- multiple use of polyethylene diapers.
But the diaper fit also has several disadvantages. Most often, young seedlings suffer from a lack of sunlight, which slows down their growth and development. You also need to take into account that grown seedlings may need a pick – it depends on the specific culture and its variety..
In addition, in many cases, during diaper growing, the roots of the sprouts remain weak, not keeping up with the rapidly growing green part..
Making diapers and preparing seeds
Before growing seedlings in diapers, it is advisable to prepare seed material in advance. This will accelerate its growth and rooting, strengthen the immunity of the seedlings. This will not take much time – the seeds need to be sorted out, blackened and spoiled thrown away. Disinfect the rest of the specimens in a weak solution of potassium permanganate and harden.
To make a diaper yourself, you will need plastic wrap, low plastic containers, a container of water, tweezers and a few thin rubber bands. Also prepare a nutritious substrate and a soft underlay for the laminate in a roll of 1.5 m.
How to make seedling diapers:
- Unfold part of the liner roll and pull one side towards you.
- Pour a nutritious substrate over the entire belt and smooth it with your palm – the result should be a uniform layer no more than 1 cm high.
- Spread the seeds out on the surface of the soil, marking the beginning of the row with a marker. Leave a distance of 2-3 cm between the seeds, lightly tamp them with your fingers.
- In this way, scatter the seeds over the surface of the soil over the entire belt and roll it into a roll..
- Gently pull the resulting roll with a thin elastic band – due to this, the soil will not spill out of the diaper.
After fastening the diaper, water it well and cover it with a plastic bag to create a greenhouse effect. Place the finished structures vertically in plastic containers – make sure that the edge marked with a marker is on top.
Planting germinated seeds
Growing seedlings in diapers is not only suitable for dry seeds, but also for pre-germinated seeds. This technique is not difficult. Before planting, prepare everything you need – plastic container, polyethylene, nutritious garden substrate, thin rubber bands, scissors.
How to plant seeds:
- Cut out squares from plastic wrap no larger than a notebook sheet.
- Moisten the nutrient medium well.
- Pour a spoonful of moistened soil onto the corner of the square you cut out.
- Lay the plant sprout on the ground – make sure that only the root is located on the film, and the green part is above it.
- Add some more substrate and “wrap” the seedling, bending the lower side of the square.
- Roll up a square with a sapling in the form of a roll and fasten with a thin elastic band for reliability.
Place prepared rolls in a plastic container and place on a well-lit windowsill.
Growing seedlings without soil
Germination of seeds in diapers can be carried out without the use of soil. This original method has gained wide popularity among summer residents, as, thanks to the abandonment of garden soil, the risk of developing many diseases, the pathogens of which are transmitted with soil particles, is significantly reduced.
To grow seedlings, the following materials will be required – a plastic container, plastic wrap seed material, a roll of toilet paper, scissors, thin rubber bands and a spray bottle.
How to grow seedlings:
- Cut the plastic wrap into long strips. Their width should be 8-10 cm.
- Line each strip with toilet paper and spray liberally with a spray bottle.
- Step back 2 cm from the top edge and start laying out the seeds, leaving a distance of 3-4 cm between them.If the seeds are large, it is better to increase the gap to 5-6 cm.
- Cover the seeds with another layer of toilet paper and a plastic strip on top..
- Fold the strip into a roll and secure with an elastic band.
Place the rolled diaper in a plastic container and pour some water into it. The toilet water from the roll should be about 2 cm in the water. Cover the seedlings with plastic or a plastic bottle for a greenhouse effect and place them on a lighted and warm windowsill.
Seedling care in diapers
Care of seedlings grown in diapers has some features that must be taken into account in order to obtain strong and healthy seedlings..
Basic rules for caring for seedlings:
- For the first 10-15 days, the seeds should be under a plastic cover or plastic bottle. The greenhouse effect helps the seeds to take root and germinate faster. Remove the foil after the first sprouts appear.
- One of the most effective ways to water seedlings in diapers is by using nutrient solutions. Solutions with the addition of humic acids are well suited. In order not to harm young sprouts, reduce the concentration by half. Repeat the procedure no more than 1-2 times a week.
- Use a clean, dry sponge or cloth daily to remove condensation drops from the plastic wrap.
- For the full development of seedlings, a day length of at least 8-9 hours is required. If necessary, you can use phytolamps and other sources of additional lighting..
- After the appearance of 3-4 real leaves, dive the seedlings. Unwind the diaper, measure out about 3 cm of roots and carefully separate with a knife. Transfer to a separate diaper or container filled with soil.
Planting seedlings in diapers is an original method that is perfect in cases where there is clearly not enough space on the window for all the seeds. It requires a minimum of time and effort, and comfortable and practical diapers can be made independently from available materials at hand..