6 Ways To Prepare Land for Transplanting Vegetable Seedlings
Farmers should start with preparation long before the vegetable seedlings are delivered by the bulk-supply nursery. Preparation guidelines are provided below, helping farmers get an idea of what is involved.
Transplant guidelines are also available for download here.
Prevent Wind Damage
If the vegetable seedlings are to be transplanted to the open field, the farmer must erect wind breakers where necessary to avoid damage to the young vegetable plugs from strong winds.
Soil Preparations For Vegetable Seedlings
Remove any leftover plants from the previous crop and remove weeds. Plough the soil to a depth of at least 60 cm and apply the necessary steps to achieve optimal aeration. Test the soil pH to determine if it is right for the particular crop. Make the necessary adjustments through nutrient and fertilizer applications and test again.
If plastic mulching is to be used, the farmer should lay down the sheets across the field and punch holes for where the plugs will be transplanted. The sheets help to warm up the soil and to minimise further weed growth. It is imperative to make the holes big enough to prevent the plastic from touching the stems of the plants. This is necessary to prevent the plants from suffering burn damage when the heated plastic comes in contact with the stems. The plastic sheets must be tight on the ridge to reduce the risk of mechanical damage. Take special care when the vegetable seedlings are transplanted to prevent contact with the plastic sheets.
Plan for the particular type of irrigation and wet the soil properly the day before the plugs are to be transplanted and directly after transplanting. In most instances, drip irrigation works well with outdoor field growth. However, enquire from the bulk-supply nursery’s agronomists regarding the best type of irrigation for the particular type and variety.
If several varieties are to be planted, mark the areas clearly to ensure the correct variety is transplanted to the specific section. This is also important for irrigation, nutrition, and pest control purposes.
Delivery and Transplanting of Vegetable Seedlings
Once the trays of vegetable seedlings are delivered to the farm, check and confirm the varieties. Categorise and keep varieties separate. Confirm that the plugs match the product descriptions of the trays and the delivery note. Where trials are received along with the order, mark these clearly and keep separate to follow up later during the growth period.
Water the plugs before transplant and ensure the area to which the transplant takes place is properly watered. Transplant to the prepared holes. Squeeze out air pockets in the soil surrounding the roots through firming of the soil by hand. Make sure the vegetable plugs are transplanted with their roots straight to avoid J rooting. Do not place the plug trays on the soil while transplanting. Make sure the soil only covers the plug medium and not the stem as well.
More information about the transplanting process and key points are available under the Our Products section. Reach out for a quote and information on the types of vegetable seedlings available.