Why re-pot/thin out seedlings?

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Why re-pot/thin out seedlings?

Post by PSC-C » Sat, 04 Apr 1998 04:00:00



Wouldn't the weeds have less of a chance in a densely planted border?
LD

 
 
 

Why re-pot/thin out seedlings?

Post by D. DeLuc » Sat, 04 Apr 1998 04:00:00


That's a very good point.  I think minimum-distance guidelines for
vegetables and flowers were written when people had large farms.  I have
seen recommendations to plant plants like dusty miller 6 to 8 inches apart.
 Do you know what that would look like?  The plants have a radius of maybe
three inches!!  No one wants to look at bare soil or, as you pointed out,
weeds.  As long as you provide fertilizer and moisture as needed, and the
plants receive enough sun, I say crowd them in there and you'll have a
better-looking display.



| Wouldn't the weeds have less of a chance in a densely planted border?
| LD
|

 
 
 

Why re-pot/thin out seedlings?

Post by Dwight Siple » Sat, 04 Apr 1998 04:00:00


Quote:

> Wouldn't the weeds have less of a chance in a densely planted border?

Weeds can be shaded out by a dense planting, but so can the plant you
want to grow. You need to provide enough space for the target plant.
This usually means thinning the plants in their early stages. If you
wait until they get big to thin them, they will start to compete with
each other and won't grow as fast as they would if they have enough
space. In the meantime, while they're small, the weeds will grow. That
means you have to hoe them out.

The interaction between plants isn't all above ground where you can see
it. The roots interact, and the extent of the root is generally much
larger than you expect. There's a rule of thumb that says the root
spreads out about the same distance as the leaf canopy. I suspect that
this is not the case, since many trees seem to send roots a considerable
distance beyond that point. Also, the roots get smaller and smaller as
they approach the edge of their growing region, so you might dig up some
soil in an area where roots are active and not see them because of their
relative size.