Using a clean seed tray, pot or module tray. Break up any lumps in the compost. Fill your container whilst shaking the sides of the container to settle the soil. Do not firm with fingers! Ensure all corners are filled. Use a ruler or flat piece of wood which sits across the sides of the containers and scrape/skim the top removing excess compost to give a fully level surface
Gently firm your leveled compost with the base of another container
Heavily water the seed tray with a fine rose and let it drain for a few hours
Sow the seeds thinly, leaving space around each seed. Scatter in seed trays or sow singly in module trays and pots
Sprinkle a little Seed Start, if you have it over the seeds to help Improve germination, achieve better root growth making stronger garden plants
Cover the seeds lightly with more compost, no more than the depth of the seed
Label your container with the name of the seed and date sown, laying the label down at the side of tray for easier covering
Cover your container surface with clear glass, plastic or cling film. You should not need to water again. The covering keeps the humidity within the tray and protects against cold draughts
Place your sown containers on a flat surface in a warm spot to germinate such as a windowsill or greenhouse. Check the seed packets for ideal temperatures. A constant even temperature warmth is required for the best germination.
Tip- place sown containers on a kitchen drinks tray to avoid water leakage.
Keep an eye on your seed trays as germinating seedlings will soon appear. Once seedlings become visible remove tray covering allowing the seeds to ‘breathe’.
Tip- Daily finger test the compost to see if it requires watering. Damp soil sticks to the finger. Dry soil does not
Keep warm and gradually ‘harden off’ plants and prick out or pot on when large enough to handle by leaf tips rather than touching roots
Ensure your garden location is warm enough to plant out tender plants into permanent positions. In most areas of the UK this is early June