A little over a month ago I started a variety of flower seeds that will go into my flower pots as soon as the weather decides to stay warm. (Will that day come this year!?!?)
After a couple of weeks little Geraniums, Morning Glories and Snap Dragons began to peek out of the soil and I turned on the lights.
Those little flowers have grown their first two 'real' leaves and it is time for me to transplant them into larger containers.
Notice the small smooth edged leaves found toward the base of the geraniums in the picture above, these are those first leaves. The larger green and red leaves are the 'real' leaves & are recognizable as a geranium leaf.
What do I mean by a 'real' leaf? The first leaves on a seedling often look nothing like the leaf found on the mature plant. Their purpose is to provide the immediate energy needed for the seedling to get established. Quickly the seedling needs more energy than those first leaves can provide and the 'real' leaves begin to grow. These leave will look just like a leaf found on the mature plant.
Once the seedling has two 'real' leaves, it can handle the shock of being transplanted into a larger container. The seedling can stay in the cell longer, but the larger container will be less likely to dry out and give your seedling plenty of space to grow. For most plants, this is the only transplant that they will need before they go into their permanent home.
It is also at this point that you will thin to one plant per container. If you try to pull out a nearby seedling you could damage the roots of the plant you want to keep, so it best to just clip them off at soil level with a fingernail clippers.
Make sure to water your newly transplanted seedlings well and put them back under the grow lights or in a sunny window. They continue to need 8-12 hrs of full spectrum light. Check out my post about lighting seedlings, leave a comment or send me an email if you have questions.
Happy (indoor) gardening!