The Q&A Archives: Pinching out

Question: I don't fully understand Pinching Out , would you please explain? I am planning on starting seeds soon. I am also very confused in regards to light for the seeds. Do I begin the seeds with light or introduce light after seeing seedlings appear. The more I read, the more intimidating it becomes! Judi Barth Franklin, MA

Answer: Pinching out means to remove the growth at the tips of the plant. The easiest method for starting seeds is to sow them at the required depth, bottom water until fully wet and drain. Place the pot/flat in a plastic bag to reduce evaporation and put under lights. This insures that the emerging seedlings will have maximum exposure to light and the heat from the light bulbs will encourage growth. When you see the first seedling emerge, remove the bag. If the seed packet says the seeds require darkness to germinate, follow the above procedure but cover with aluminum foil instead of a plastic bag.

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