Growing Seeds in Perlite

I have already started seeds in little jiffy pellets. My question is about starting seeds and rooting cut offs in Perlite. I am re-using plastic tubs that fresh spinach comes in at the supermarkets. How much Perlite should I put into the bottom? They are about 6-7 in. deep. How much water do you use and how do you achieve that? Also, how much do you water the Perlite? Thank you.

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Hardiness Zone: 7a

By Extremefrugalist from Baltimore, MD

Answers

April 21, 20090 found this helpful

Using straight perlite for seed starting is not the norm, it is used for cuttings. Instead start with a quality "seed starting mix"; it will be free of pathogens and of the correct particle size for starting seeds - fine, with the ability to hold moisture until seeds have sprouted and pushed through the surface. his link to Richter's Her't succeed, try, try again."

The problem most folks without a greenhouse or indoor shelf & shop light fixture system have is that once germinated seedlings require very bright light or they will stretch and fall over. I have a metal bake''s rack, seedling heat mat and shop lights equipped with full spectrum daylight bulbs (set 4 inches above the flats) for starting my perennial and veggie seeds indoors. Once they have true leaves, if the weather is right, I move them outside for more natural light either in the flat or transplanted to cell packs, protected from overly hot sunlight with floating row cover or shade cloth to continue the growing out phase.

There are simple, cost effective systems one can set up " just experiment and you'll find one that works for you.

The most important pointers I can give is to do a little research BEFORE you plant those seeds; find out what that particular seed requires BEFORE you waste your seed, time and resources ($$$) trying a method that may not work. If those are rare or expensive seed don't plant them all at once, see if the method works first; start a notebook, keep track of methods used, dates and results. Also learn how to properly STORE seeds so they remain viable.

So many seeds, so little time. Happy Gardening!

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