How to make seed compost for starting seedling

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How to make seed compost for starting seedling

How to make seed compost for starting seedling

Last Updated on February 3, 2020 by John

This is the season for seedlings. Now is the time for germinating in your home or greenhouse, which of course requires a good seed compost. The problem is most compost types including multipurpose compost you can buy from garden centres and nurseries are not ideal seed starting mixes. You have probably had some plants that no matter what you did, just did not germinate. They seemed overly watered on top but dry to the bones down below. 

The cause? If the compost mixture isn’t right, it can lead to bad water absorption, something that proves fatal to your new seeds because they can rot before they started. If the nutrient content is wrong, it will hinder root growth and seedling need very little nutrient value at first. 

Plus, it’s expensive. No matter where you look, high-quality compost is expensive. 

To that end, knowing how to make seed compost for starting seeds can prove very useful especially if you are going to germinate from seed, season after season. 

The Recipe for germinating seeds

To make anything, you need the perfect recipe. Seed starting mix needs to be low in nutrients, hold on to moisture without becoming soggy, and it needs to be light and fluffy so the roots don’t can penetrate and spread without much resistance. 

Getting the base mix right

Start with the base of your mixture which should contain two parts compost. When reading this compost mix, be advised that the parts are based on volume, so whatever amount you are making, you can keep to the same volume and ratio. We recommend just using a large jug to scoop the correct amounts in equal volumes.

Use 2 parts compost that has been sieved with a riddle

Compost will release nutrients slowly, something the growing seeds need. Break apart the compost with your hands but we recommend using a compost riddle to make it as fine as possible. 

Mix the compost with 2 parts coir

Mix in two parts coir, or coconut fibre. This is what often lines store-bought wireframes for hanging baskets and it is a great alternative to peat moss. and we are always trying to find good alternatives to peat to do our part to help the environment. While peat moss is the normal additive here, it is not a sustainable product to use while coir is which is why we recommend it. 

If you order coir and it arrives in a block form, you need to rehydrate it in a bucket of water until it breaks apart. 

Canna Coco Professional Pro Soil 50L
  • High quality, cleaned and pre-treated coco coir ideal for pot culture or other bulk uses
  • Very easy-to-use and gives great results
  • A pure, organic product with a homogeneous structure and has had a full buffering, eliminating the side effects of growing on coir
  • Free of harmful viruses and soil diseases, thanks to CANNA's unique production process
  • Complex water/air system that that provides the ideal conditions for growing plants

Finally, add one part perlite to the mix

Lastly, add one part perlite to improve air content and lighten the mixture. Sand is an alternative to perlite, but it will produce a heavier mix.

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Mixing the compost mix

When you have all your ingredients, you need to mix them thoroughly. Use your hands for better tactile engagement and thoroughness; the more consistently mixed the better. When you are done, store your mix in a lidded container or thick plastic sack in a cool, dry place. 

Germinating seedlings

When it comes time to use your mix, moisten it so that it is not sodden, but not dry. Use recycled containers, seed trays, or module trays and gently press down on the mixture as you fill in your container of choice. Consider using a heated propagator to improve the germination rate and speed up the process.

Stewart Essentials Electric Propagator, 52 cm - Black
  • 52 cm heated propagator
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Be sure to sow the seeds according to your packet instructions and water afterwards. Rest assured this mixture can be used as you transplant young seedlings and is something you can make year after year.

Would you rather buy seed compost?

SaleBestseller No. 1
Levington John Innes Seed Compost 10L
  • Ideal for sowing seeds, striking cuttings and delicate seedlings
  • Specially developed, with a high phosphate formula and 14 vital minerals for optimum root growth
  • Traditional mix of loom, peat, sand and fertiliser
  • Perfect for all seedlings
  • Approved by the John Innes Institute
SaleBestseller No. 2
John Innes Seed Sowing Compost by Westland Garden Health 10l
  • 10 Litres, Peat and Loam for perfect nutrient and moisture retention, Perfect for bringing seeds to life, For Fast, healthy seeds germination, Feeds for the first 3 weeks, Added Vermiculite to retain moisture, For plants that require Low nutrients, Under 50% Peat content
SaleBestseller No. 3
GRO Sure Seed and Cutting Compost 10L by Westland
  • Improves germination by 25% for the best start.
  • Super fine grade Improved aeration & drainage.
  • Seaweed & nutrients for healthy growth.
  • When trialled with standard seed & cutting compost and standard seed
  • 10L bag
Bestseller No. 4
1 x Bag of Dalefoot fine wool seed compost peat free: 12 litre
  • A wool and bracken mix - 100% sustainable and peat-free
  • Compost is soft, fine-textured and peat-free which makes it perfect for seeds, seedlings, and cuttings
  • From the sheep of the Lake District National Park
  • Excellent water retention - great for pots, planters, hanging baskets
  • Delivered straight to your door in a 12 litre bag
Bestseller No. 5
Organic All Purpose Potting Compost Enriched with Nutrients - Expands to 10Ltrs
  • All purpose expandable potting compost for in and outdoor use
  • Organic and enriched with nutrients to boost plant development and health
  • Small lightweight, easy to carry pack - expands into 10 litres when water is added
  • No more carrying around heavy, backbreaking bags of compost. No more mess in the the car or through the house
  • Perfect for smaller households or flats with limited storage space

Last update on 2020-10-20 at 04:12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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