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How to Move Vegetable Seedlings From Indoors to Outdoors

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Even in the deepest part of the winter, gardeners are busy preparing for the coming season. They rototill their gardens, turn the compost piles and even start seeds indoors. Seed starting can be tricky business, but it’s worth the trouble for many because of the wider range of plants it makes available. Inexperienced gardeners are sometimes disappointed when the seedlings they nurtured for weeks indoors sunburn, collapse and die after being introduced directly to the garden. Success with seedlings depends on proper hardening off, a process where seedlings are toughened up gradually in preparation for transplantation.

Move seedlings to a covered, wind-sheltered location during the day for the first week. Water them thoroughly to prevent them from drying out. Ensure they do not sunburn by placing them in a shady spot.

Gradually increase the time the plants remain outdoors by an hour or two a day, until they are able to stay outside all the time. Decrease watering gradually until the seedlings’ soil is just damp — do not allow them to dry out.

Move full sun plants from the porch into the sun for two hours the first day. Increase their exposure to the sun slowly, no more than two or three hours at a time. Watch them carefully the development of bleached-out spots on their leaves — this is a sign of sunburn and is devastating to seedlings. Transplant your seedlings once they can stay outside in the sun all day long.

How to Move Vegetable Seedlings From Indoors to Outdoors. Even in the deepest part of the winter, gardeners are busy preparing for the coming season. They rototill their gardens, turn the compost piles and even start seeds indoors. Seed starting can be tricky business, but it’s worth the trouble for many because …