Why You Should Never Plant Seeds In Wet Soil

Bringing more plants into your life is always a good idea. If you're looking to start a lovely backyard garden, or maybe just want a few fresh herbs to fill up your kitchen windowsill, growing from seeds is a budget-friendly way to begin your journey. You can purchase an entire packet of seeds for much less than you'd pay for the live version of that plant at a garden center. Aside from the economical appeal, buying seeds allows you to choose from a much wider selection of plants and specialty varieties that aren't commonly found in garden centers.

Another plus? Seeds allow you to cover a large area of garden in half the amount of time it would take to dig up a hole and place each plant individually. This works especially well if you're going for a cottage garden style and want your flower beds to look more natural — i.e. everything isn't perfectly spaced and arranged. While planting seeds can be such a rewarding and relatively easy process, there's a major mistake you want to avoid, or else none of your seeds will germinate.

Be careful with the soil

While seeds can be pretty forgiving, there's one thing you never want to do: Don't plant your seeds in wet soil! What's the big deal, might you ask? Isn't water supposed to help plants grow? That is absolutely true, but it's all about moderation. The soil should be damp, but never soggy or drenched. Gardening Know How warns that too much water in the soil can cause your seeds to deteriorate.

It's important to start your seeds in the proper soil to help control any moisture issues. This means that you should opt for a good potting soil and not normal dirt from the ground. According to Gardening Know How, be sure to choose one that drains quickly and/or specifically mentions seed starting on the packaging. These types of potting soil are engineered to retain just enough water to keep things moist and then drain out the rest. Choosing the right kind of potting soil serves as an added layer of protection for your seeds. The soil shouldn't be dry to the touch, nor should it be so soggy that it's like quicksand under your finger.

Watch out for "damping off"

Once the seeds have sprouted, over-watering still presents danger to your baby plants. Until they're more well-established, the seedlings are highly sensitive to extremes, whether it's the temperature, moisture levels, or organic intruders like fungus. Gardening blog You Should Grow compared young seedlings to the story of Goldilocks. They need the conditions to be totally on point — not too cold, not too hot, not too dry, and not too wet. It's an accurate analogy, and you should set up a watering plan to make sure the seedlings always have the perfect level of moisture.

Gardening Know How says that "damping off" can happen when sprouted seeds get too much water, wither, and die. Fungus can also contribute to damping off, though the fungus usually enters the scene in the first place because of the higher moisture levels. So, how can you protect your seedlings? Gardening Know How suggests watering one or two times daily until the seeds grow, and then you can scale it back. As long as you give your seedlings some extra TLC, you're well on your way to growing healthy, vibrant plants.