Every year I have the same problem with trying to germinate seed so this was the year I built a new seed propagator. It’s been long overdue! Usually I sow the seed and it germinates very poorly die to too much of a variation of temperature.
So I splashed out and got a proper set of heating cables and thermostat from Parasene, the best on the market. The first thing that needed to be done was work out the size of the box so the correct length of cable could be ordered. 160cm long x 6ocm wide seemed like the best size so as to fit on top of one of the polytunnel beds. A quick bit of maths worked out that I needed approximatly 11m of cables so the 12m option from Parasene was perfect.
The box was designed with a slope from the back to the front to allow the maximum amount of light into the propagator and will also be orientated to face south to get the sun all day.
In the bottom of the box before I placed a 2 inch slab of polystyrene to help with saving energy and hopefully this will keep the heat going up to where its needed. As you can see from the pic below, I used little fencing staples to hold the cables in place.
Here it is nearly finished, just need the legs put on now when it goes up to the tunnel…
Its now in place and has the legs attached at the right height so its comfortable to work at. I placed a sheet of plastic between the cables and the sand so its easy to remove the sand in the future without making a mess. It’s also high enough that the space underneath can still be used for salads and other smaller growing veg plants.
All finished, up and running. I am going to get a piece of piano hinge and fix the lid onto the propagator so it can be opened easily. Also it will be easier to prop open a little when it gets too warm in the tunnel.
The thermostat and controls for the new seed propagator are on the left side of the box and currently connected to an extension lead going back to the garage. Hopefully we can take a power connection out of the flood light in the veg garden and install a plug socket beside it
Only after a few days the tomatoes, aubergines, peas, salad and beetroot are already jumping out of the compost.
Really looking forward to growing lots of different fruit and veg this year!