Vitax Grow Tubes are biodegradable so are perfect to plant out seedlings with the tube intact, providing protection and minimal disturbance to the plant root system.
Filling - stand the tubes in a tray or box and half fill with good quality seed and potting compost, firm gently and continue filling to withn 2.5cm (1") fo the rim. Tie string around the top of the tubes to keep them upright in the tray.
Sowing Seeds - sow one seed into the centre of the tube and cover lightly with a little compost. In the greenhouse capillary matting can be used to help maintain a constant moisture level.
Watering - after sowing, water thoroughly and allow to drain. Keep the soil moist but not over wet. Tubes will last for about 12 weeks during which time the roots of the plant will penetrate the wall of the tubes. If white mould appears on the side of the tube, separate the tubes by 25mm to allow air to circulate and dry the outside of the tubes.
Planting Out - Plants are ready for planting out when roots begin to grow through the sides of the tube. Do not remove the tube. Make a hole in the ground and position the tube with the rim 2.5cm (1") above the surrounding soil. Firm into position and water thoroughly. The rim of the tube deters pests and acts as a funnel, channelling water directly to the roots. Do not allow the area to dry during the first few days after planting.
When planting sweet peas, insert a large cane beside each plant. Ti the plants to the can and remove the tendrils as the plant grows to encourage flowering. Runner beans will support themselves around the cane.
Sow beans and sweet peas in March and keep warm until the danger of frost has passed. For early sweet peas, sow in October/November, grow in a cold frame through the winter and harden off in the spring.
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