Sunday, November 6, 2016

Thinning seedlings

Thinning seedlings is always hard for me. I kill so many plants that I have a hard time weeding out those that actually are alive. Unfortuantely, come harvest, I always regret that I didn't thin more.

So, I found an answer online that I think might work for me, psychologically. Instead of weeding the seedlings, I carefully pull them out of the ground and attempt to replant them a few inches to the side of the row. If the transplanted seedlings die, it is really no loss, as I would have weeded them anyway. But there is the possibility that I will get even more to harvest!

I tried this earlier this week with the radishes. I pulled up about half of them. Some were in no shape to transplant, but I was able to replant a bunch of them. They looked very wilted for a day or two, but now, a few days later, the transplanted seedling have perked up, and I now have two rows of thinned-out radishes, instead of one. Woot! The transplanted row is much smaller than the non-transplanted. But I figure that will just space out my harvest a bit :o) Perfect!

With heavy rain forecasted for the next two days, I thought it might be a good day to tackle the carrots and the beets. I went through and pulled up at least half of the beet seedlings.  They look pretty limp and lifeless today, but I am hoping that, like the radishes, in a few days, I'll have two rows of thinned beets. And if not, I consider it a lesson learned :o)

The carrots were very thick.  I wound up pulling up two thirds of the seedlings. I am not convinced that the transplanted ones will work. If their root isn't transplanted exactly straight, will I have crooked carrots?  Or will they eventually straighten themselves out?  I guess we'll know in five months. Either way, I will have a better harvest for thinning them out. :o)

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