HOS ~ Hunk-o-Seedlings Transplant Method.
Don't thin your seedlings, instead hunk them! WinterSown's Hunk-o-Seedlings method will help you to quickly and easily plant your garden. Divide your thickest flats of seedlings into smaller hunks to make plugs to plant. Ma Nature will cull the weakest seedlings for you, with care healthy WS seedlings grow into lush clumps.
Here the seedlings are divided in half, you can use a small straight edge knife to cut through soil and roots or gently work the soil and roots apart with your fingers.
This is the cilantro flat tipped out of its container, the roots are holding the soil together.
Hunks made from a half. Just pry off a hunk--do it gently to minimize tearing roots. These hunks are about an inch or so wide, they are nicely-sized transplant plugs.
The whole flat is now divided into hunks and ready for transplanting.
A tightly germinated flat of cilantro seedlings. Notice the blue cover in the background, you can winter sow under tinted plastic lids with no problem.
Here hunks are planted in staggered spacing, about five inches apart--there will be plenty of room for these seedling plugs to fill in and grow.
A bucket of transplant solution ready to water the hunks immediately after transplant.
Gently dribble the transplant solution around the transplanted hunk, water thoroughly and be ready to water regularly over the next few days to help keep the soil moist. Taper back watering when the seedlings "take' and begin to grow without your assistance. Weed as needed.
Starter Solutions for the Home Garden (PDF)
General Home Garden Series No. 16
University of Hawaii Cooperative Extension Service
Make Your Own Complete Fertilizer (PDF)
University of Alaska at Fairbanks Cooperative Exxtension Service
Free, Homemade Liquid Fertilizers
Mother Earth News