The content of the article:
Petunia is, perhaps, one of the most favorite ornamental plants in florists. Its bright flowers, like a scattering of precious stones, can decorate any flower bed. Petunia is also used as a pottery for decorating balconies, open terraces and loggias.
There are several varieties of petunias, which differ in the size and shape of the flower.
But beauty, as is known, requires sacrifice. Therefore, in order to enjoy the abundant flowering and cheerful colors of the petals, it is necessary to exert a lot of effort. The fact is that growing petunia seedlings is a real art, not having mastered which it is difficult to get the desired result.
Let's consider together with you how to plant petunia on seedlings in such a way that every year you get the desired result, not disappointment.
Time of planting petunias for seedlings
Any florist who decided to plant petunia on seedlings should first determine the type of flower and the type of seeds. If the former is completely dependent on personal preferences and features of the future flower bed or pendant box, the second is limited to the two most common forms of seed sales:
- in granules.
Advantages of the placer form is their price and the opportunity to evaluate the quality of the seed material by eye, and the pluses of the granules are a convenience in sowing and slightly better germination, but they are slightly more expensive.
After the variety is selected and the seeds are bought, it remains only to decide when to plant petunia on the seedlings. This is a very important point, about which the florists-beginners forget. On average, from the moment of sowing seeds in the greenhouse, about 2 months pass before the first flowers begin to appear. Therefore, if you want to enjoy the bright colors of petunias already from the spring, then you need to take care of this in advance. However, the shoots of this flower are sensitive to spring frosts, so too early planting in the open ground can lead to the death of the plant.
There are recommended terms for sowing petunias for seedlings:
- if there is an opportunity to organize a daylight for your mini-greenhouse, the planting of seeds should be carried out at the end of February;
- if it is difficult to do technically, crop it better to postpone until mid-March. The fact is that petunia sprouts are very fond of daylight with a special wavelength that is lacking in the February sun.
In order for the petunia seedlings to grow healthy and strong at home, it is necessary to take a responsible approach to the selection of boxes and soil for sowing seeds. Since their germination is most beneficial for the greenhouse effect, it is better to choose boxes with lids that allow daylight to be wide enough to land. You can use plastic containers to store products with transparent covers.
That shoots were friendly it is important to monitor the quality of the earth mixture. It can be packaged land for indoor plants, which are sold in flower shops, or peat tablets.
At the bottom of the box or container, it is necessary to pour a layer of broken brick, expanded clay or pebbles, this will ensure good air access to the roots and prevent waterlogging.
Once the seeds are selected, the boxes with the ground are prepared and the timing of when to sow the petunia on the seedlings, you can proceed directly to planting.
Seeds of this flower are very small - no more, mm, so it can be difficult to plant them at a certain distance from each other. It is better to cope with this task granular forms of seeds, they can be taken with tweezers for plucking eyebrows and sow strictly in rows. Such a method will provide the same conditions for all seedlings and facilitate further sprouting of seedlings.
Because of their size, the petunia seeds are not embedded in the soil, but are sown over the surface and sprinkled with a layer of earth 1-2 mm above.
When the planting of petunia for seedlings is complete, the boxes are closed with lids and placed in a room with an air temperature of 20-22 C⁰. It is important to ensure that the soil always remains slightly moist, but does not turn into a marsh. Condensate, which accumulates on the lid should be wiped daily, and the boxes with seedlings should be ventilated for 10 minutes.
If agrotechnics are observed correctly, then the first shoots appear about a week later.
Kindergarten: caring for petunia sprouts
After we learned how to plant petunia on seedlings, it's time to proceed to the next stage - caring for the sprouts.
After appearance of shoots of flower growers it is possible to congratulate, as the most difficult and exciting stage was left behind. Now it's up to nature itself, which is worth a little help.
It is necessary to carry out hardening of seedlings. For this, as soon as the first cotyledon leaves of the flower appear from the ground, airing should be increased. In this case, you need to start from 5-10 minutes several times a day. After the appearance of the first real leaves of most shoots, the lid of the box is completely removed.
When the shoots reach growth of 4-5 cm, they should be dived. The procedure is as follows: with the help of a thin garden knife, each landowner is dived to a depth of 3-4 cm, with the direction of the blade being at an angle of 45 ° to the soil surface. Thus, the tip of the root root is plucked off and a stimulus is given to form a branched root system.
Transferred pikirovannye plants in the "kindergarten
- in a separate container (which is preferable);
- in a common container, but large in size.
To get a strong healthy seedlings, the seedling at the planting is slightly buried, leaving the trunk no more above the ground, Thus, the plant is prevented from stretching and lodging.
It is best if the picking is done in individual containers, since this facilitates the landing in open soil and does not bring additional stress to plants, because their root system remains completely intact.
Most often, disposable plastic cups are used for this purpose. However, it is necessary to make drainage holes in their bottom and pour a layer of expanded clay to the bottom to improve air access and outflow of excess moisture.
After the picking and the appearance of new leaves, the plants are hardened. The best way to do this is to ventilate the room. Take care that the containers with seedlings do not stand directly on the windowsill, this can cause frostbite of the leaves. Begin with 10 minutes of ventilation every day, gradually bringing up to half an hour.
After the appearance of 3-4 main leaves, the seedlings are fed. It is important to remember that the first fertilizing should not be radical. It is best to spray plants with specially designed fertilizers. Good influence on the strengthening of stems and leaves stimulators of growth, they allow you to get a strong plant by the time of landing in the ground.
Petunia transplantation to a permanent place
Petunia saplings are planted in the open ground after the spring frost has receded. The distance between plants depends on the variety. For small-colored varieties, it is 10-15 cm, and for terry varieties with large flowers - 20-25 cm.
To petunias pleased with a violent color, you need to pinch too long shoots and tear off drooping flowers.
Approximately by mid-July, the plant must be cut off, leaving a trunk 10-12 cm above the ground. This stimulates the growth of lateral shoots and ensure the flowering of the plant until the fall.
Floriculture requires a lot of patience and love for plants. This especially applies to such moody beauties as petunia. But knowing how to grow petunia on seedlings will surely help you tame this obstinate and get the desired result.