Instructions: How to prepare soil for seedlings

The time for planting seedlings is in full swing. Gardeners buy substrate for planting, and those who do not trust purchased soil prepare it themselves. If you want to try to form a soil mixture with your own hands, then you will need to study the rules for preparing soil for seedlings. Public news service I figured out how to prepare soil for seedlings myself.

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General requirements

The composition of the soil mixture is determined by the characteristics of the crop that will be planted. But no matter what plant is planted, the soil for seedlings is formed according to the following rules:

  • the composition should be rich in nutrients;
  • the content of components must be balanced;
  • the soil for seedlings should be light and loose so that enough oxygen reaches the roots;
  • the soil should absorb and retain moisture well, and its acidity should remain within 6.5-7.0;
  • the soil mixture must undergo a disinfection procedure;
  • it should not contain impurities of heavy metals, hazardous waste, etc.


The best option is soil that contains both organic and inorganic ingredients:

  • Organic.

These include the following components:

  • turf land;
  • soil from the garden;
  • compost;
  • leaf litter compost;
  • humus;
  • eggshell;
  • wood ash;
  • peat.
  • Inorganic.

Inorganic components are different in that they can be created not only by nature, but also using technical means. These include:

  • river sand;
  • perlite;
  • vermiculite;
  • hydrogel;
  • expanded clay;
  • crushed foam.

Prohibited substances

It is very important that when preparing seedlings, the following components do not get into the soil:

  • Actively decomposing substances.

These include, for example, fresh manure or tea leaves. The fact is that in the ground they can begin to rot, and then heat will be generated and the volume of nitrogen in the substrate will decrease, which can have a detrimental effect on the development of potential plants.

  • Clay.

If clay gets into the substrate, it will be heavier, stiffer, and denser. As a result, air will not be able to easily penetrate to the roots. Fragile young bushes will hurt and may even die.


Disinfection is the most important stage in preparing home soil for seedlings. The fact is that the basis of the mixture is usually soil from the garden, in which many pathogenic microorganisms, larvae, and fungal spores accumulate over the season. To prevent parasites from attacking young roots, they must be eliminated by disinfection. Let’s consider the most popular and effective methods of soil disinfection:

  • Freezing.

The freezing method consists of alternately placing a bag of earth in the heat and then in the cold. For three days the soil is in the cold (-15…-20 degrees), another three days – indoors so that the larvae wake up, and then again – in the cold, where they freeze and the soil is cleared of parasites. The procedure must be repeated 2-3 times.

  • Calcination.

This is one of the simplest disinfection methods, which is suitable for a small volume of land. The disinfection method looks like this:

  1. Pour the soil onto a metal tray in a layer of up to 5 cm.
  2. Spray it with plain water from a spray bottle.
  3. Preheat the oven to 70-90 degrees.
  4. Place the soil in the oven for half an hour.
  5. Cool the mixture and begin planting.
  • Steaming.

This method is very fast, but somewhat labor-intensive. The soil should be poured into a colander and held over a pan of boiling water for 7-8 minutes, stirring constantly. This method not only disinfects the substrate, but also enriches it with moisture.

  • Etching.

The simplest treatment method is etching the soil with a pink solution of potassium permanganate.

Soil for seedlings in a paper bag

Preparing the soil for seedlings

Next, consider step-by-step instructions for preparing land for seedlings of the most popular crops:

  • Tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers.

To prepare a composition for planting seeds of peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers, follow these steps:

  1. Mix turf soil, peat and compost.
  2. Add sand to the mixture to loosen and wood ash to deoxidize.
  3. If there is not enough compost, you can enrich the composition with urea or potassium superphosphate.
  4. Disinfect the mixture in any way.
  • For cabbage.

For cabbage, turf or garden soil, peat and humus are combined in equal parts.

  • For eggplants.

To prepare seedling soil for eggplants, stir 1 tbsp in a bucket of garden soil. l. superphosphate, half a glass of ash, 1 tsp. potassium sulfate or urea.

  • Flowers.

The soil for planting flower seeds is prepared as follows:

  1. Combine turf soil, humus, compost, peat and sand in proportions 3:2:1:2:1, respectively.
  2. Mix the ingredients.
  3. Add wood ash in a volume of 1 cup per 10 liters of mixture.
  4. Disinfect the composition.
  • Strawberry.

Some brave experimental gardeners grow strawberries through seedlings. The following soil options are suitable for this capricious culture:

  • compost + garden soil + wood ash in the ratio 3:3:0.5;
  • sand + humus in a ratio of 3:5;
  • peat + sand + vermiculite in a ratio of 3:3:4;
  • sand + garden soil + humus in a ratio of 3:1:1.

Whatever combination is chosen to form a soil mixture for strawberry seedlings, the resulting composition must be disinfected.

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