Monday, May 13, 2013

Sprout Thinning and Sucker Pinching

While I was installing the drip irrigation system in the raised beds, I did a bit of maintenance.

I transplanted some overcrowded lettuce from one slit to a slit that had no sprouting lettuce.

I marked the unproductive slits by poking my finger through the slit into the growing medium. The plastic mulch was then pulled back revealing the hole.

A sprout or two was taken from one of the overcrowded slits and place into the poked holes.

The medium was then firmed around the newly transplanted sprouts. 

The plastic mulch was replaced being sure to align the slits with the sprouts. The slits were enlarged to allow more room for sprout growth.

The tomato plants have already added green mass over the last week or so. 

Along with regular growth there were many suckers that needed to be pinched off the vines.

As you can see there were quite a bit to remove. By removing the suckers the plant can use its strength to grow a strong central stem and additional roots. A strong stem is needed to support the soon to be tall vine. More roots will benefit the plant with a stronger base. They will also have the ability to reach deep below the sun dried surface where moisture is present. 

Thinned and pinched the garden is looking good.

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