A heated propagator with grow lights and thermostatic control, is ideal for tomato seedlings!
Have you ever wondered why young tomato plants look so healthy and stocky with good green leaf cover at the garden centres?
It’s because they have been sown and grown with the right amount of light and at the right temperatures!
Seedlings Need Plenty of Light
One of the biggest challenges when growing tomatoes is trying to prevent seedlings from becoming leggy or spindly.
This happens when there is not enough light.
Seedlings need plenty of light to become stocky young plants.
When there is not enough light, they grow tall in search of more light, especially if they are growing too close and therefore in competition with each other.
Seeds and seedlings need the right amount of heat and consistent temperatures
Keeping seedlings at around 18 to 20C during the day and around 15 or 16C at night is ideal.
However, when night temperatures drop too low, seedling growth can become checked and they grow at a much slower rate than they should.
Use The Right Growing Media
Furthermore, the soil or media they are growing in, helps prevent over watering.
See also: Best media for sowing tomato seeds
It’s so easy to over water seedlings. This reduces the amount of air in the soil and slows growth – plants need moisture and oxygen in their growing media.
Sowing Too Many Seeds
Each season I sow too many seeds and end up with far too many seedlings competing with each other for light.
Seedlings and young plants with thin stems, usually turn into mature plants with thin stems.
Thin stems reduce the uptake of water and nutrients tomato plants can absorb – especially on a hot day!
This often leads to a reduced crop because tomato plants will only produce the amount of tomatoes they are capable of producing.
A heated propagator for sowing and growing tomatoes in their early stages is extremely useful indeed!
See also: LED Grow Lights