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What is a seedbed?

A seedbed, seedbed or seedbed (from classical arabic masqāh, "water tank") is an area of land prepared and conditioned to sow vegetable seeds, in order to produce their germination under the best conditions and care, so the seedling can grow and develop without difficulty until it is ready for transplant.

MATERIALS

  • Substrates:   The selected substrate must be porous, to facilitate aeration, and in turn have good water retention capacity. It is essential to guarantee the total health of the environment used and thus reduce the risks of the appearance of pests and/or diseases. It is not recommended to use soil, not even in a mixture. Use a sieve or wire cloth to strain the substrate and make it fine

    • Peat is the most widely used substrate for the production of seedlings, due to its excellent physical properties. It is an organic material made up of elements from the decomposition of vegetables.

    • Substrates of local origin, such as organic fertilizer + coconut fiber (ratio 50:50) and organic fertilizer + coconut fiber + melina sawdust (ratio 40:40:20), are very effective.

  • Trays: Black plastic trays are preferred. The usual size is 128 cells. For species that do not develop much foliage, 200-cell trays. The 72 or 98 cell trays allow the seedbed phase to be extended by a few days, as they have more space and volume of substrate where the root can develop.  If you prefer to reuse, you can use containers about 15 to 20 cm deep that you can divide into squares of about 4 cm each and put a lid to prevent light access and the seeds are protected from the wind, birds and insects.  Make sure that the container or containers that you are going to use have holes in the base, so that excess water can drain, and that they do not have any material that can rust such as paint or varnish.

 

  • Hybrid F1 seeds NUMU seeds; the crop achieves a higher yield, greater resistance to diseases, shorter cycles for harvest, a high percentage of germination.  It is NOT advisable to store seed for more than 2 years.

When do you have to sow?

 

It is important to review the planting calendar of your region  and the Moon's calendar To find out at what time of the year it is best to start growing vegetables.

 

 

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How to prepare seedlings or germinate seeds successfully?
  1. The tray is filled with the selected substrate up to the top level of the cell, preventing the substrate from compacting.  Some substrates, such as peat or coconut fiber, must be slightly moistened prior to filling to ensure homogeneous moisture in the substrate.

  2. If the substrate is made by mixing, the raw materials must be combined in volume measures, in proportions according to the relationship that is desired to be obtained. It must be ensured that the mixture of the components is done in a clean space and especially favoring the greatest possible homogeneity at all times.

  3. Once the trays are filled, the holes are made in the substrate, one centimeter deep, with a pointed object marked up to the level of cm required, since the same planting depth guarantees uniform germination and emergence.

  4. In the case of NUMU seeds hybrid seeds, a single seed is placed per cell. After placing the seed, it is covered with a thin layer of the same substrate that was selected.

  5. Then a uniform irrigation is given, but not excessive, to all the trays. Water very carefully not to disturb the seeds. Don't overdo it with the water, it's just to moisten the top of the seedlings.   In successive irrigations, what we will do is leave the almagic on a tray and in this we will put the irrigation water. This way we can keep the seedbeds with an optimal degree of humidity to favor the seed germination and later, once they have germinated, the seedling will absorb the amount of water it needs, without excesses and largely avoiding the appearance of fungi.

  6. The trays must be identified with at least one number, the planting date and the name of the          species     or sown variety.

  7. It would be ideal to place the trays for 2 to 5 days (depending on the species) in a dark room with relative humidity and a temperature of 25-28°C. As soon as the seed has germinated and begins to emerge, the trays should be removed from this room and taken to the greenhouse where it will complete the nursery phase. If this room is not available, after sowing and labeling of the nursery, the trays are transferred directly to the greenhouse.

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ADVANTAGES OF MAKING A SEEDBED Better plants are obtained for transplanting, which results in a more uniform and healthy final plantation. Plants can be available at any time of the year The rooting of the plants in the planting site is facilitated, as the root is protected by the adobe. Plants enter the production phase faster. There are plants protected against diseases, pests and adverse weather conditions, in the initial periods, which are the most susceptible. There is a more efficient control of water and fertilization in the initial stages of production. There is a more efficient process in managing time, labor and resources. Better use and performance of the land. They guarantee a better selection of the seed and with this the possibilities of having a better productivity in the crops increase considerably; Facilitates family farming, since both the farmer and the children can participate in planting. Seedbeds are very important because they allow certain vegetables with very small seeds, such as lettuce, cabbage, tomato, to achieve good development in their first period of vegetation .

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