Seedling care

Womble54Womble54 WimbledonPosts: 238
This is the first year I’m growing everything from seed and I’m paranoid I’m going to do something wrong and kill them all. Some advice would be great.

I’ve got lots of tomato, cucumber, cucamelon, courgette, squash and pumpkin seedlings that I’ve pricked out into pots. My peas and beans have already gone in the ground under fleece(probably a bit early I know). The aubergine and chillis failed to germinate so I’m starting again with those.

At night they’re inside, where it doesn’t go below 15°. During the day they go out in a mini greenhouse. I’m worried the temp in the green house is too variable. When I put them in there early morning before work, it’s pretty cold, down at 5° or below. On the sunny days if I leave the green house flaps closed it can get close to 30° in there. When I’m back from work in the evening it drops down to 8 or 9° before they get brought back inside.

Is it better for them to be as warm as possible during the day to get them growing, or should I leave the flaps open while I’m at work so the temps are a bit colder but more even?

The forecast is looking warmer from next weekend so I’m hoping they’ll be able to spend the night in the mini green house in a week or two.




  • PerkiPerki Rossendale - LancashirePosts: 1,488
    That one of the main problems with the mini greenhouse fluctuating temperatures and why auto vents are must for greenhouses when no one is around.  I've not grown some but grow toms and cucumbers every year and its a bit cold yet for them to live in the GH, a bright windowsill would be better.  

    If it does warm up next week like they say why don't you leave the door open, just hope the wind doesn't blow it over 
  • SkandiSkandi Northern DenmarkPosts: 565
    How long have the chilli's been sown? they take a long time at low temperatures and 15C is low for chilli they like 20+ to germinate. They may not need throwing out yet.
    I would not put tomatoes out under 10C It won't kill them to go a bit lower but it does set them back. As to the fluctuation, stable is better but 30 is not too bad, last May in the heatwave my pollytunnels were going from 30-40 in the day with all windows/doors open down to 12 or so overnight Tomatoes, courgettes, peppers and cucumbers all managed.
  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 13,466
    Peas and broad beans are hardy, can be outside without a fleece. Too early for runner beans outside. I haven't sown mine yet.
    Dordogne and Norfolk
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 13,158
    My tomato, cucumber and pepper plants are still indoors and I sow runner beans on the 1st May and plant out 1st June, sowing parsnips seeds at the same time. 

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Womble54Womble54 WimbledonPosts: 238
    Thanks everyone. Helpful info. Overnight they’re in our out house. It’s got lots of windows, but west facing so it only gets a couple of hours of evening sun. The seedlings were getting pretty leggy so I’m keen for them to get outside for some light.

    I’ve got peas and dwarf beans outside under fleece. Both seem to be doing well. I was planning to plant my runner & French beans soon. I’ll save the broad beans till autumn.

    I sowed the chillis and aubergine 18 days ago. I’ve still got them. I’ll turn the heat up a bit and see what happens.

    I think for the mini greenhouse, I’ll leave a zip up a little bit so they don’t get too hot. Trouble is if I don’t put them out early before I go to work they’ll be stuck inside all day without much light.

    Fingers crosses I won’t have to get plants from the garden centre this year.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 13,158
    I sow my runners in individual pots, root trainers, indoors on the 1st May. They come up surprisingly quickly, once they’re up to about 6” you can put them out through the day, bring in at night, I then plant them out on the 1st of June, by then they are about 15” tall.
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • edhelkaedhelka GwyneddPosts: 189
    I would recommend buying aubergines and chillies as plants now.
    Aubergines really need a long season, it's best to sow them at the end of January or in the first half of February.
    For chillies, it depends on variety, you could try cayenne types or similar, they germinate quite quickly and reliably and are early fruiting.
  • Womble54Womble54 WimbledonPosts: 238
    I’ve got 1 aubergine that’s germinated out of 10. Still no chillis. Everything is is pricked out and looking good.

    I think I’ll take your advice edhelka and buy some plants.

    The weather is gradually warming up here. Night time lows are now about 6-7°.

    I’m going away for a long weekend next week. Hopefully it will be warm enough to leave them out in the mini green house. Forecast is for max 15° min 8° next weekend.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 53,221
    I’d buy your plants when you get back  :)
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • purplerallimpurplerallim LincolnshirePosts: 1,506
    Any veg plants not grown from seed I buy bank holiday at end of May. Usually works really well as someone else has had the trouble of growing from seed, and its plants I don't need many of, (usually my cucumber and spring onions) They can then go straight out @Womble54.😁 The French bean seeds go in the ground early to mid May.
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