Most of us have some limiting factors to consider when growing our own veg, this can range from lack of time, not having to right facilities or just the darn weather. So it’s not surprising that more and more gardeners are opting to buy many of their crops as plug plants, letting the professionals have all the problems of seed germination and tending to the young seedlings.
For the more demanding seeds, such as Cucumbers, Peppers, Aubergines and some Tomatoes, the gardener gets to grow the crops they want without having to nurse the young plants through the most vulnerable stages of their development.
As the popularity of this way of ‘growing your own’ has increased, so has the number of different varieties of plants. Many of those available are now offered as grafted vegetable plants, promising greater resistant to diseases and increased harvests.
Most suppliers offer plants in varying sizes, usually small, medium, large or extra large.
My rule of thumb is to buy the largest I can, these usually arrive nearer planting time when conditions are more favorable and they require less intensive looking after, so are worth the small extra paid.
When the plug plants arrive, I keep them in their small trays for 24hrs or so, in a light area indoors, just to allow them to acclimatise. If the roots are a little dry, they are watered, but not soaked.
After 1 or 2 days I water them relay well and transfer each plant to its own pot, a 3 inch pot is usually quite sufficient at this stage for the extra large plugs. If the pot was any bigger there is a real danger of over watering.
As the plant puts on new growth and the root ball develops, they are either transferred into a slightly larger pot, or if conditions are right planted out in their final growing position.
For a busy allotment gardener or home grower the ease and convenience of growing vegetables form plug plants is an ideal solution, and yes you can still class it as Growing Your Own.