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Old 1 Week Ago   #1
ScottinAtlanta
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Default Planting tiny seedlings under plastic bottles

Folks, I am trying something new this year - planting seedlings for kale, lettuce, beets, etc directly from the germination tray into the garden beds.


Normally, these very tiny plants would freeze or be eaten, but I am placing a plastic soda bottle (top cut off) or glass jar over each one to act as a little greenhouse, protecting them until they are established (see picture). It seems to be working well. It saves me a lot of time since I skip the potting up stage.

Are others doing this? Any recommendations on how to improve results?

So far, the plants inside the bottles seem to be doing great. 50 and sunny in day, 32-35 at night.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #2
Cole_Robbie
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It's an innovative idea. The issues I see would be the lack of fresh air and a breeze to strengthen the stems. Stuff might get big and fall over. You might remove a few jars that have already sprouted as a control for the experiment. It would also be interesting to compare the jars to a bed covered in low hoops and plastic.

Good luck with everything.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #3
GrowingCoastal
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When I reuse pop bottles for this sort of thing I cut off the bottom and leave the top open for circulation. I need to protect bean seedlings from pill bugs and slugs. This works. Great for putting over cuttings too.

I have been wondering if green pop bottles would be ok?
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Old 1 Week Ago   #4
Cole_Robbie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrowingCoastal View Post
I have been wondering if green pop bottles would be ok?
Green light is the least effective color for photosynthesis. It might work ok to make some heat to germinate seed, though.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #5
oakley
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I've done that for 20 yrs. But like mentioned, I cut the bottoms
off so the cap is up and can be removed for air like a greenhouse
can be opened above. In that position, you will toast a plant in just
a few hours. Must have been mentioned in an OrganicGardening mag
back in the day.

I mostly use it for keeping track of direct seeded small seed clusters
and label the bottle. A couple dozen in the garden shed, and a half dozen
five gallon water cooler carboys I cut the bottom off on a table saw.

About this time last year we had a few days that hit 70. Very quickly.
Then back to snow.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #6
bjbebs
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Been doing that forever for warm weather transplants. I use gallon size with the top open, mainly for wind protection. Provides very little help against cold. I would think when you begin to warm up they can be removed in a week or so.

My brother lives in the Highlands. I go down the second week of April and set out many pepper and mater plants. These are protected until the plants start spilling out over the top of the plastic, usually in about 2 weeks.
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