Posts Tagged ‘propagator’


March is when pace of growing on the allotment really picks up. You should check all your planning is finished, and that you have a clear idea of what to plant where and when. March can be used for growing crops early in heated propagators, or planting crops that are usually planted then.

Plants such as chillies and tomatoes can be planted in March, as well as whatever else you may have that says it can be on the seed packet.


Growing Crops in Heated Propagators

A seedling germinating.

Heated propagators are the most common way of starting crops off early, especially in cold rooms that require more heat. When choosing a heated propagator, make sure it is large enough. It should easily accommodate a seed tray, or more if you grow more. I have two small propagators, which means that I am able to have them on at different times for different plants. Whatever you go for, make sure you know where it will be put, so you can ensure that you have power there.

Normally, you plant at the same times or slightly later in heated propagators as the seeds often germinate faster, but you may be able to plant early to get quicker and earlier crops. You should never plant more than a month early, but remember to use common sense depending on your climate.

When planting early, keep the plants indoors in good sized pots until they can be planted out. Be careful with heavy pots.

Although heated propagators are useful, you must check that the vents are left open during the day, or mould will develop. This is a common problem when not ventilated correctly, as a warm, humid environment is perfect for fungal growth.

You should also check that you have no condensation on the glass / lid, as it may drop down on plants, and often indicated that they are over watered. You should aim to wipe it off in the morning and evening, and, as with all electrical devices, ensure it is safe, not wet, and the instructions are followed.

If a lot of condensation forms, open the vents slightly, and water less. The plants should not be soaked, just slightly wet.

When the plants have germinated, remove them from the propagator, or switch it off. This helps to make sure that the plants grow sturdily, not rushed on by overheating. Follow the instructions on the pack for ideal propagator and aftercare temperatures.