Growing Vegetables


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    My friend asked this morning if I had any spare onion plants ,she wanted to have a go at exhibiting under 8oz onions. I had several still in a 40 module seed tray insert and while potting 20 up for her I wondered how many people give their plants bottom heat after pricking out or potting on. Bottom heat for a week settles the plants and they recover from being disturbed quite quickly. The usual way is either under soil cable or a heater mat, not everyone has these or the space to use them. But an electric propagator with an inch of silver sand covering the bottom can be just as good, leave the lid but do not forget to water the pots I use my propagators more this way than for starting seeds


    This is interesting Tony as I wouldn’t have thought of doing it for the usual “outside” veg. However, I do give bottom heat after repotting the more tender things that are grown in the greenhouse, like tomatoes, cucumbers, melons and for the pumpkins and squash to give them a good start. It certainly brings them on quickly after repotting. :good:

    It makes complete sense though, if it works for tender stuff it will work for others. Thank you. :yes:


    ukAlways do I’t when I take cuttings Tony,I put them down under the shelves in the shade ,with the bottom warmth as you say, :good:


    although we have those cast iron heating pipes under the bench that only reach half of the greenhouse benches the other side has no bottom heat

    when I say bottom heat I built the benches over the top of pipes and the plants are in plastic drip trays the plants seem to grow ok with this method then we move the plants over to the unheated area after a couple of weeks then move them to another unheated greenhouse or tunnel and we start all over again with a fresh lot of seed and plants

    is this your way or do you do something different :unsure:


    That’s what I do Roly once the plants have settled after repotting I move them to my allotment green house where there’s very little heating. This is one reason I delay sowing. My limited heating is mainly for exhibition onions, large and small . Leeks only need a frost free place to grow once they are germinated.


    Is your project for a G house in your garden still on now the hedge is sorted Tony ?
    You will have the option for power in there so should give you more flexibility .


    Hi Simon have weed treated the area where my greenhouse will be and the timber is being delivered next week. Have an electrician who will run power to the greenhouse, so hopeful in two weeks can have it up and running


    I’ve learnt something here. Never thought to give bottom heat after transplanting to help settle seedlings in. I noticed the onion trays in my propegater had lovely warm bottoms and so it makes sense to utilise this heat to help settle tender veggies.

    Thank you for the advice, I’ll be using it this year.



    Hi Tony
    Take it that your going to do a self build one if you have wood on the way. Bet you are looking forward to having a G house at home Tony and with electricity in there! :lol: :good:


    one thing I read about yearss ago and have done it since, when the seedlings are through and have a reasonable amount of growth on them I stroke them very gently – just run my hand over the top of them to make them think they are being wafted by a gentle breeze – I read that the thinking is that the roots will benefit as they will grow a bit stronger to cope with the breeze – so if you see me in the greenhouse stroking my plants – no I have not lost it completely just giving them some extra TLC – ha ha and no it was not on April 1st that I read it and have not killed any plants yet


    Jenny that is a lovely comment and may well have some validity, even tho’ it sounds crackpot to start with :wacko: We have planted seeds here and I will get my granddaughter to stroke them gently when they grow….. as I won’t be here to do it for her… reminds me, must prepare some beds to plant out the forthcoming seedlings :rake:


    Hi Jenny. You aren’t potty, I have been doing that for a few years now as well as talking to them!


    I talk to my plants also some thing along the lines pull your socks up or its the compost heap :whistle:
    Touching plants is not a new idea ,in large greenhouses a fan does the same thing, it’s the reason why we have fans blowing over onions in grow tents, it helps thicken the leaves. For some reason I am not sure of drying onions in the dark with a fan blowing on them for a week improves the skin quality


    Well I’ve certainly learned something new here today :good: warming their bottoms and stroking them too :wacko: not the bottoms that is :harvest: ;-)
    But will give it a go :yes:

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