If you are starting your new garden seedlings with the seeds you harvested last year, now is the time to plant. We want our gardens to get the very best start to a new growing season, and planting indoors or in a heated greenhouse will prepare young plants for post-frost outdoor gardening.

Using Seed Trays

Using a horticultural seed starting mix will get you off to a good start. Add your growing medium to each pot in your starting tray insert and pack lightly. The bottom tray will be solid to collect water, and you can water directly into this bottom tray after the first initial watering so your soil is not disturbed. Your seed packet will tell you how deep to plant the seeds, or if you have collected your own seeds, a quick online search will tell you about seed depth for planting. Labeling the seed trays right away is a good idea, before you forget which seeds are planted where. After watering, place the dome on your starting tray and place them on a grow-heat pad if you have one, under your grow lights or in a full sun window space to get started. Don’t let your seeds dry out and as soon as you see germination, remove the plastic cover to prevent damping off – a fungal disease that can kill seedlings. Using a gentle fan after germination for air movement will help create a healthy fungal free environment.

Cuttings and Rooting Powder

It’s easy to clone your favourite flowering vine with rooting powder. Just snip a 3 to 6 inch cutting of a healthy plant, lightly moisten the cut end with clean water, dip the end in rooting powder, gently tap off the excess and plant. Peat cubes work perfectly for new cuttings as they are compact and easily placed in bay windows or under grow lights. Take cuttings with a very sharp blade (to avoid crushing) while your plant is not in bloom stage, or is dormant in winter. You can use rooting powder in any soil, sand, pearlite, peat moss or even coco coir as a grow-start medium. Try rooting powder for woody plants and vines such as raspberries, climbing roses, wisteria, jasmine, trumpet vines and honeysuckle. Depending on the time of year you plant, usually in February, your new cuttings will be ready for planting after first frost when the roots are established.
Now is the time to plan for your garden and landscaping in Penticton. For commercial ventures, call Emerald Irrigation and Landscape Construction in Penticton to discuss irrigation techniques and installations for water conservation and successful crops. We have over thirty years of experience in the industry and look forward to serving you in 2021.