Grow Plants From Plugs

Inexpensive "plugs," seedlings that you pot up once before planting out, are ideal if you don't have the space to sow seeds yourself and are the simplest option for plants that are hard to germinate.

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container filled with plants available as plugsEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited This beautiful container, ideal for a partly shaded spot, is filled with 'Illumination Rose' begonias and fragrant blue heliotropes, all grown from plugs, together with 'Genii' fuschia and trailing golden creeping Jenny.

When to Start: Spring
At Their Best: Late spring to autumn
Time to Complete: 1-1/2 hours

Materials Needed:

  • plug plants — begonias have been used here
  • dibble or pencil
  • potting soil
  • large modular trays or small 3-inch plastic pots
  • watering can

Planting Options

Most popular bedding plants, including geraniums, busy Lizzies, begonias, lobelia, snapdragons, dahlias and fuchsias are available as plug plants, although many companies also offer a selection of newer and more unusual varieties. Order in early spring for a late spring delivery.

Image 1: flowering tobacco 'Nicki'; 18 inches high
Image 2: Nemesia strumosa ‘KLM’; 10 inches high
Image 3: Gazania Chansonette series; 12 inches high
Image 4: geranium, Horizon series; 16 inches high

Order Your Plugs

When ordering plugs, make sure you will have time to pot them up soon after they arrive—most companies specify when they will be delivered. Plugs are also known as "miniplants" and companies may offer them at different stages of development. The youngest plugs will be cheapest.

Plug PlantsEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Remove Plugs From Container

When the plugs arrive, water well and store them in a cool, frost-free place. Fill large modular trays, or small 3-inch pots, with good-quality potting soil, designed for seedlings and young plants. Using the blunt end of a pencil or a dibber, gently push the plug plants out of their original containers.

Take Care When PlantingEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited
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Excerpted from How to Grow Practically Everything

© 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

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