Thanks to some feedback from Kensho Homestead, I decided to go ahead and trim our bulb onion seedlings this morning.
Though our temperatures dipped below freezing lat night, the sun room remained nice and warm. I didn’t even bother putting the plastic cover over the mini greenhouse to keep more of the heat from the ceramic heater bulb in.
Now that they’re trimmed, you can really see the difference between those in the Jiffy pellets, and hose in the K-cups. They’re both peat, so the growing medium is not the reason.
This tray was designed for the pellets, and to water from below. The bottom of the tray has channels for the water, with a felted mat on top, then a molded tray that holds the pellets, while also keeping the bottoms in contact with the mat below. The K-cups have drainage holes, but they don’t seem to have enough contact at the bottom for watering from below to work well, and they dry out much faster. At first, the ones in the K-cups were doing better, but now it’s the ones in the Jiffy pellets that are noticeably stronger and healthier.
I did water them after this photo was taken, making sure to get the K-cups thoroughly wet. I’m trying to think if I have something I can transfer the K-cups to that will let me water them from blow. I think it’ll be the only way to keep them well watered, without over watering the rest.
Lesson learned: don’t mix two very different starter “pots” in the same tray. I used the K-cups because I only had enough Jiffy pellets to fill half the tray. I should have just used half the tray with the Jiffy pellets, and found something else to put the K-cups in. The K-cups do work well – as long as they can be adequately watered.
The luffa are coming in strong and healthy, and doing very well!
Perhaps too well!
I used these pots, so they can be buried directly into the ground when it’s time to transplant them, with no root disruption. Which means we’re going to have to reduce each pot to just one, strongest plant. It seems like such a waste to discard strong seedlings, but if we separate them out to plant more of them, that will create the root disruption we’re trying to avoid!
Three plants should be more than enough for our needs. Especially since we don’t even know if they’ll get the time they need to reach full maturity before first frost in September.
I bet they’d do great if we could find a way to grow them in pots in the sun room! LOL Pretty sure they’d overgrow that corner rather quickly, though. 😉