Raising Seedling and Nursery Care for Cole Crops and Fruit Vegetables
Quality seeds & Quality seedling are the most essential requirements for the full potential of any seeds to achieve a high yield of an vegetable crop . Raising a quality nursery means savings in the usage of precious hybrid seeds, timely and sufficient seedling availability for the planned acreage, uniform crop maturity, plant health, and ultimately the quality of produce.
Select a location where one could ensure semi-shady conditions well-drained medium-loam soil; rich in organic matter and neutral soil pH. An irrigation source in the vicinity with neutral pH water is highly desirable.
Nursery beds should be prepared with the utmost care. Ensure that while preparing the beds the soil is at optimum moisture level and workable. Prepare raised beds 10 to 15 centimeters high with the help of spade in straight lines and parallel to each other. Work to a fine tilth. Remove all soil lumps and pebbles. Some 20 beds measuring 8-meter x 0.6 meters are sufficient for raising sufficient seedlings for one hectare. Add 150 to 200 kilograms of well rotten FYM along with 200 grams of DAP and 30 grams of Carbend 50% WP / Captan 50% WP per bed and work to mix thoroughly within the bed.
Immediately after the seeds are sown, watering adequately or rather
drenching the seedbeds with the help of a watering-can is absolutely necessary. It may be noted that this ensures good seed-soil contact,
ensuring good germination. Remember to add 1 gram of Carbendazin 50% WP/Captan 50% WP per liter of water for irrigation
This is a simple treatment of hardening the seedling to prepare it for a transplanting shock into the main field. At 4 to 6 leaf-stage of the seedling gradually cut down the irrigation till on the 5th to 7th day the seedling gets used to practically no irrigation. In that case, the seedlings droop, showing water stress during the afternoon sun but
firms-up next morning. This is nothing unusual, hence, do not panic.
Seedlings are like small babies, hence, need tender care while handling. Remove seedlings with the help of a fork or a twig with sharpened edges. Place the fork under the root system of individual seedlings and lift roots applying a gentle pull upwards with the other hand. In the process some roots are bound to break Some root breakage facilitates early main root development. Packing for the seedling shipment is often overlooked. Place the seedlings in an upright position with some soil attached to the roots. Never crowd and bundle too tightly. It is always better to transport these in baskets or crates at the earliest possible. Care should be taken to minimize dehydration in transit due to hot sun/dry wind blowing over. Provide cover of thin muslin cloth. Never use polyethylene as cover during hot sun.