Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Day 17: Dr. Carlson Performs the Transplant

Today was a big day. The young plants were getting a little crowded in their little peat pots and couldn't afford to wait around until I got some more styrofoam packing peanuts for the remaining pots. So I went ahead and set up 6 of the pots. I already had the styrofoam peanuts in place and the drainage holes at the bottom. Next step was to mix up the soil. So I took an unused bucket and mixed up the soil in that. 1 part peat moss, 1 part vermiculite, 1 part perlite. Then I took the heartiest 6 plants and chose the alpha wolf of the pack from each type. I dug a nice hole in the center of each bucket and buried them up to their first leaves - the buried section will develop into root over time. These weren't particularly leggy, so didn't matter as much. Then I watered each.

Also took this opportunity to cull the weaker plant from each pair. Recall I planted two seeds in each pot. To give the stronger one a better chance of survival, the weaker plant is snipped off low on the stem. It's the same process as culling puppies to maintain superior specimens. This gives the plants that have to wait a little longer in the trays a bit more elbow room. The culls will go onto the compost heap. Goodbye little culls, you tried valiantly, but it's for the best. I was just kidding about the puppies, by the way.

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