How To Keep Seedlings Until Spring? How To Dig In Or Store In The Basement?

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How To Keep Seedlings Until Spring? How To Dig In Or Store In The Basement?
How To Keep Seedlings Until Spring? How To Dig In Or Store In The Basement?

Video: How To Keep Seedlings Until Spring? How To Dig In Or Store In The Basement?

Video: How To Keep Seedlings Until Spring? How To Dig In Or Store In The Basement?
Video: Digging and storing spring bulbs- Tulips, Daffodils, Muscaris and Alliums and sowing Muscari seeds 2023, December

Many gardeners panic if, immediately after buying seedlings, winter suddenly begins and the soil is hidden by a layer of snow and ice. What to do with the seedlings, where can you put them, how to save so that they do not die? Now we will tell you about all this.

How to keep seedlings until spring
How to keep seedlings until spring


  • Fear has big eyes
  • Storage of seedlings indoors
  • How to dig in seedlings for the winter?
  • Tips for storing seedlings

Fear has big eyes

Let's immediately discard stone fruit cultures, they are a separate topic. It has been written and said more than once that stone fruits - cherries, plums, sweet cherries, and so on - are best planted in spring. How to dig in stone fruit seedlings, if they were bought in the fall, we will talk a little lower, and now about something else.

As you know, biologically, the roots of various fruit crops, in particular, pome crops, can freely develop in the soil if its temperature is only about three degrees above zero. In addition, the surface part of the plant, that is, most of it, is asleep, so the plant will not feel transplantation or division in this state.

When planting in a cold soil, not frozen, namely in a cold one, a kind of immunity is formed in pome crops, the root system develops more powerful and deep, therefore, the drought resistance of plants increases. So, if the soil is only slightly frozen from above, then you should not panic.

Before the plant is safely dug in, you need to think about how you will transport it. Very often you can observe the following picture: the roots of the plant are securely packed, and its entire above-ground part is bare, and the car rushes with a trailer full of seedlings along the icy road. This is fundamentally wrong and can lead to the death of the above-ground part, its freezing. So, when transporting in this way, be sure to cover both the roots and the aerial part of the plant, and the second is even better than the first.

Storage of seedlings indoors

We brought the plants and we see that the soil is already completely frozen, say, 6-7 degrees below zero. It is no longer possible to plant or bury plants in such soil. Then we resort to the old, kind and time-tested method: we place the seedlings in the basement, in wet sawdust. At the same time, the roots can either be packed in a plastic bag (if it is very cold in the basement - that is, almost like on the street) or not packed, but simply sprinkled with wet sawdust, if in the basement there is about zero towards a negative value.

The main thing is that, at the same time, not only the root system of the seedling, but also the lower part, to the root collar, is sprinkled under the sawdust, and if it is a one-year-old (that is, one twig), then a couple of centimeters higher.

Seedlings wrapped for transportation
Seedlings wrapped for transportation

After the seedlings are laid for storage in the basement, start monitoring the temperature in this room. So, if it suddenly began to grow and rise higher, then you will have to open the vents and doors to let in cold air and lower the temperature, because even at five degrees above zero, buds can begin to wake up, that is, the plants will begin to wake up, and this does not bode well good.

You can store seedlings, if winter suddenly came, not only in the basement. The main thing is to ensure the optimal temperature and not allow the sawdust to dry out. For this, in fact, any non-freezing room with moderate humidity in it is quite suitable - this is a cellar, basement, balcony (of course, if it is not heated, but necessarily glazed), where the temperature is kept at a level from zero to minus one (plus- minus a couple of degrees, but no more).

Storage of stone fruit seedlings

As promised, let's talk about seedlings of stone fruit crops, they can also be stored in the basement if the soil is already frozen. The main thing for stone fruits is to remove all the foliage, because it draws moisture from the shoots, and often stone fruits are sold with an abundance of leaf blades, especially cherries.

Stone fruits can be stored in separate boxes or boxes, while it is better not to use plastic bags: the root collar is very sensitive to podoprevaniya in these crops. Remember to keep the sawdust slightly damp while doing this.

Be sure to carefully examine the roots before placing in a box or box for stone fruit crops. If it seems to you that the roots are not moist enough, then it will be okay if you put them in cold water for a couple of hours.

Digging in a seedling with a closed root system
Digging in a seedling with a closed root system

How to dig in seedlings for the winter?

If it is too late to plant and the soil is not frozen yet? Then dig in right on the site and as soon as possible, until the ground is frozen. In order to preserve, in fact, any seedling in the ground, it is necessary to build a hole or trench and position it roughly from east to west.

The size of this fossa is unambiguously difficult to describe, it depends on a number of factors: here and the number of seedlings, their length and age (whether the seedling is branched or not), how developed its root system is - all these factors play a role and are reflected in the size of the fossa. Consequently, the more seedlings, branches on them, the more developed the root system, the larger the hole (trench) should be in length and depth.

When choosing a site for a hole, try to choose the driest and most well-ventilated place. It will be great if it is protected from the cold wind from the north side and more snow accumulates there.

In order to make it somewhat easier for you to calculate the length of the fossa, we note that for about each plant, in addition to the immersion of the root system, there are also two tens of centimeters of cover for the aboveground part of the soil, and for stone fruits - all three dozen.

The average depth of the fossa should be approximately 50 cm, and the width should be 30-35 centimeters (again, these are all average sizes). Try to dig a trench so that from the south there is a slope with an angle of 45 degrees (we are talking about the walls), and make the north side as vertical as possible.

On heavy soil, where melt water can accumulate under the seedlings, it is advisable to make a "bedding" from a mixture of peat and river sand in equal proportions.

On top of the seedlings, before you sprinkle them with soil, be sure to lay coniferous paws, sprinkle with needles and coniferous sawdust. Then you can sprinkle them with soil, the layer thickness of which should be equal to ten centimeters.

It is possible to remove dug-in stone fruit crops from the trench only in mid-April, when the soil warms up and it will be possible to plant them in a permanent place.

Digging in seedlings for the winter
Digging in seedlings for the winter

Digging in seedlings of pome fruit crops

We turn to fruit seed crops (this is an apple tree, a pear, and others). These plants, in principle, can be attributed to fairly cold-resistant, of course, if you have selected varieties that are suitable for your growing region. Considering this, it is possible, if the soil is not frozen, then even at a later date, plant them on the site, but if it is frozen by frost, then you should definitely dig in. If you don't want to risk it at all, then it is also worth digging in the seedlings regardless of the condition of the soil and simply focusing on the timing.

Digging in pome crops on the site can be carried out according to the same principle as for stone fruit crops. There is no particular difference here, although the trunk can be filled up by a third less, the main thing is that the roots are in the hole, are moist and well covered with soil.

Some gardeners additionally cover all buried seedlings with plastic wrap. To do this, in fact, is undesirable, because condensation accumulates under the film if the sun's rays fall on it, which in the future can lead to rot. If you really want to cover your pits with something, then it is better to use lutrasil or other non-woven material that "breathes" for this. Conduct a shelter at the beginning of the first frost, you should not rush with this.

In the basement, seed crops, like stone fruits, are buried in sawdust. You can do this by placing the seedlings both vertically and at a slight slope. And if it is a balcony, then a seedling or several of them can be placed in a wooden box, on the bottom of which you can pour sawdust, put a seedling in them and cover the box with sawdust to the very top.

General rules for digging

Whether from pome crops, from stone fruits, from any shrubs or semi-shrubs before storage - in the basement, cellar, boxes, in the digging hole - all leaves must be removed. Firstly, they draw water from the seedlings, even if they look sluggish in appearance, and secondly, the leaf blades, dying and crumbling, begin to rot, and rot can easily spread to the shoots.

Next, pay attention to the roots, we already wrote about this a little above, but it is useful to remind once again: if the root system causes some suspicion, for example, it seems to you dried out, then do not be lazy and soak it for a day in water, only clean, without fertilizers and other substances that can stimulate plant growth. After this time, the seedlings can be stored.

Further, and this is also important, any ditch of seedlings, wherever it is, must be protected from rodents. There are two ways: one, so to speak, is dangerous, and the other does not pose any danger. A dangerous method is laying out a large number of poisoned baits - it is dangerous because both a pest and a useful animal or bird can eat the bait.

The safe method consists in covering the entire ditch with a strong net, plastic or metal, and fixing this net along the edges with anything, if only it is strong.

You can use sticky glue in the basement: you probably don't have hares in the basement, but you can easily catch mice and rats with sticky glue. It is safe for pets and deadly for rodents.

Preparation for preserving seedlings of fruit crops and conifers for the winter
Preparation for preserving seedlings of fruit crops and conifers for the winter

Tips for storing seedlings

If the necessary covering materials, such as, for example, sawdust, rags, moss, sand, and the boxes themselves are frozen, frozen, frozen, then it is easiest to freeze them by sprinkling with boiling water. You should not beat off and split off: this way the physical costs will be significantly higher, and you can damage, say, at least the same box.

If the seedlings are very small, for example, sent by mail, but it's already so late that there is no way to dig them in on the street, and there is simply no room in the basement, then they can simply be put in the refrigerator, but at the same time you need to wrap them in foil before branching, you can and regular food.

From the bottom of such an impromptu package, holes should certainly be made, small, you can pierce the film with an awl or a thick needle, and when the height of the snow outside the window reaches 18-20 cm, the seedlings can be transferred straight from the refrigerator into the snow without removing them from the package.

To prevent the snow from melting during the thaw, be sure to cover the snowdrift in which you dug the seedlings with a layer of sawdust, preferably at least a dozen centimeters thick.

Separately, I would like to say just a few words about conifers and rose seedlings.

Coniferous seedlings storage

Let's start with conifers, so it is not advisable to store their seedlings in a cellar, it is better to dig them in the garden, but at the same time choosing a place protected from the sun and wind. Due to the fact that conifers are always sold in containers, that is, with a closed root system, it is absolutely not necessary to dig large holes, you can simply place them in boxes and arrange them on the soil surface.

The main thing is to make sure that the roots of such seedlings are slightly damp, you can insulate the top of the pot a little more by sprinkling it with soil, perhaps dry, and the sides of the container should be wrapped with any covering material, say, lutrasil. If there is a lot of lutrasil, then you can make a cone out of it and cover the plant with it completely, or the whole box with plants as a whole.

If you received seedlings of coniferous crops when there is already real frost outside, then you should not leave them outside, move them to a room that resembles a garage. You should put boxes or boxes in it, pour a couple of centimeters of sawdust on the bottom and place seedlings in these boxes or boxes, sprinkle all the free places with sawdust and pour at least a couple of centimeters of sawdust on top. At the same time, it is not at all necessary to cover the crown of conifers in the garage, the main thing is that the roots are insulated, and if a severe frost is expected, then the boxes themselves can be wrapped with felt cloth or any old clothes or blankets.

Storing rose seedlings

Finally, about roses. The end of October is the perfect time to take care of the summer beauties. Until about mid-November, they can be safely planted in the ground in the center of Russia. If the soil is frozen, then they should also be placed dug into the trench. To do this, you also need to dig a trench with a depth approximately equal to the bayonet of a shovel, put a seedling there, cover it with soil, and sketch spruce paws on top or spread any covering material.

Small seedlings of roses are well stored in an ordinary household refrigerator, the main thing is to place them on the lowest shelf, the one where the temperature changes from zero to four degrees Celsius. It is advisable to wrap the roots with slightly damp paper, and it is quite possible to use newspaper paper, and then place them in a plastic bag and tie it tightly.

When storing roses in the basement, also try to keep the temperature at the same level. Remember that roses are best stored not in sawdust, but in wet river sand, buried in it for two-thirds of the stem.

Well, that's all I wanted to tell you about the storage of seedlings. If you have any questions, we will be happy to answer them in the comments.