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The Need for Seed. Growing Succulents from Seeds.

If you’re a succa for a new plant but are also trying to watch every penny, then germinating succulents from seeds could definitely be for you. It doesn’t take much more than a pack of seeds, some potting medium, and some planting trays to get started, and with our tips, you’re sure to be succ-cessful.

Deciding on the right seeds to buy is the most important step. Just like buying a plant from a store, you need to make sure the plant your seeds will grow into is appropriate for you.

You’ll need to research the plants you want, and check that you can keep them in an environment where they’ll be happy.

By using reputable seed dealers who only sell freshly harvested seeds from succulent experts you can be sure that your seeds are genuine and of good quality, which will give them the greatest chance to germinate. Buying from smaller dealers is usually accompanied by a willingness to offer advice and help you troubleshoot any problems.

Selecting a good potting medium is the next step for succulent seeds.

You want a material that will, firstly, give your seeds the best chance of germinating, but secondly, grow into healthy seedlings.

There are pre-made succulent soil blends that you can buy, and you’ll probably find some at the same place you purchased your seeds. If you want to make your own though, it’s definitely possible.

You want to aim for a free draining course material that can also retain some moisture. You can make this with blends of sand or perlite and good quality potting mix. The sand will help the drainage, and the potting mix will hold some moisture and offer stability.

Whatever product you use, it’s a safe bet to sterilize the soil before planting seeds. This will help stop any nasties in your mix from attacking your seeds before they get the chance to grow. You can do this by heating the soil in an oven at 150oC for 15 minutes, or in a microwave for 5.

Fill up your planting container with your potting medium and gently pack it down.

Spray some water over the soil so that it’s damp. Gently begin to scatter your seeds over the soil. The potting medium should be moist enough that the seeds stick to the surface.

You’ll need to space your seeds apart, but how far apart will depend on what you’re growing. You don’t want to overcrowd a planting container, because as the seeds germinate and grow, they’ll compete with each other.

Depending on where you live, you might need to place your seeds in a sheltered area or cover them with a plastic bag. This can help stop them from blowing away or drying out in the wind.

The plastic bag can also help keep in the humidity if you live in a dry area. The container should sit in a semi-sunny area, which gets a mix of direct and indirect light and stays warm. A sweet spot is around 21-22oC. Keep the soil moist, but not wet, and your seeds should germinate within anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. You should research how long your variety will take so you can keep track.

After your seeds germinate, you’ll see little seedlings stick their head up. At this point, you can remove the cover from your trays and let the seedlings get some fresh air.

You’ll still need to keep the tray moist, and it’s important to consider how quickly they could dry out without the cover. You can progressively add less water as the root systems establish more, finally getting watering to once a week.

Moving your seedlings out of direct, hot sunlight in the first few weeks is also important. As the leaves are young and tender, the direct sun can damage them easily.

As the plants establish, you can then begin to move them back into more sunlight, or into conditions that will suit where they’ll eventually grow. This is called hardening off seedlings, and it helps acclimatize plants to environmental conditions over time, rather than having them as big shocks.

At this stage, you’ll also need to begin transplanting bigger seedlings so they don’t crowd smaller ones. By gently removing the plant and all the soil surrounding their roots, you can quickly drop them into a new container full of succulent blend soil, and they’ll be happy little campers.

Paying money for plants can succ. But paying money for seeds that you can germinate at home and get lots of plants from, just makes sense. With a bit of effort, you can get loads more plants for much less money, and continuously increase your succulent collections without breaking the bank.

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