Propagating Containers


Containers for starting seeds should be clean, sturdy and fit for purpose.

To reduce the risk of disease/s being transmitted to the new seedlings, wash and clean previously used containers prior to reuse.

To do this:

Immerse the container/s in a solution of one part bleach to nine parts water for around 5 minutes then allow to drip dry.

Wear rubber gloves when carrying out this task.

Containers immersed in cleaning solution
Washed Pots

Prior to sowing; always select a container suited to the number and size of seeds being sown.

Selecting the right type of container from the outset can help to get seedlings off to a good start and can save work in the longer term.

Containers take many forms, for example; Plastic pots, half pots (pans), flat trays, and recycled food containers*.

Less common are Clay pots possibly because they are more difficult to disinfect between uses, plus they break quite easily and are quite expensive to replace.

Vending Cup
70mm Pot
Half pot / Pan
Clay Pots

Food Container
Full, Half and Quarter trays

9 Cell tray insert
24 Cell tray insert
84 Cell tray insert

*Make certain that adequate drainage holes are made in the bottoms of the recycled food containers,and that the containers are sterile.

In recent years, cell/ plug trays have become quite popular particularly by commercial growers when sowing seed.

The amateur grower may find that sowing into cell trays is time consuming,initially it is but the method can save time in the longer term.

For example;

Removing Plug from Tray

  • At the pricking out stage, they are effectively pricked out.

  • There is less root disturbance when potting up.

  • The plants tend to grow faster because they have not been ‘checked’ at pricking out stage An alternative to pots and trays is; biodegradable pre-formed peat pots, and or compressed peat pellets.

  • These allow the container to be planted along with the seedling, thus eliminating the shock of transplanting
Plug ready for potting up

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