Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Paper Pots for Winter Sowing

Wouldn't you know it, I tried something new and it worked great!

In my wintersown box this year, I used origami paper pots * to separate varieties in large plastic containers.

 photo 20130430_162650.jpg
Red russian kale so the package says. I grow different types including red ursa (my fav) and more but this is the first that I've noticed that has slightly hairy leaves at least as seedlings.

I prefer the larger, reusable plastic container rather than many smaller 'milk bottle' type because of the ease that I can move it around.

 photo 20130430_163148.jpg
An adventurous root.

Despite my very tentative removal, the paper pot that had been sitting outside since Jan/Feb did not fall immediately apart as I feared. And though roots could go through, they were mostly contained so there was no tangling between boxes. The seedlings were still small though.

 photo 20130430_163208-1.jpg
Eek, my roots are showing!

Sides were easily torn down. It probably helped that the container was moist.

These were planted out today having been well hardened off as they were never inside to begin with and the lid has been off these days with the warmer weather.

 photo 20130430_165303-1.jpg
Here they are residing with some leek offsets. This is the third year going for these leeks.

The toilet rolls cut in half are cutworm collars - i.e. cutworm exclusion devices. I used to use bottomless cups but they were messy to clean up and last year, earwigs thought they made excellent nurseries.

I love winter sowing and all its variations:

  • sowing seeds that either require or withstand some amount of cold or oscillating temperature in the fall in the ground

  • sowing into a nursery bed in fall or very early spring

  • sowing under a season extension device as simple as a pop bottle cloche to something as fancy as a greenhouse.

  • sowing seeds in pots but leaving pots outside in a place sheltered from flooding, wild winds and other pot demolishing forces. Snow would anchor them down of course.

  • * I used a slightly different technique to make the larger pots but this is instructive

    1 comment:

    Stefaneener said...

    I thought I was trying wintersowing this year, but it didn't work well under my cloches. Maybe I'll do pots -- and I love your newspaper ones.