The first of the seeds have germinated and are now showing signs of their first true leaves. The first set of leaves, seed leaves, are called cotyledons and are part of the seed, acting as a food source fuelling the seeds growth before it produces its first true leaf which will start to photosynthesise its own food.
For the last week Ali, Danny and Kieron have been spending the first few hours of the day in the greenhouse, when it is as its coolest, pricking out the many seedlings that are ready for pricking out in to their own individual pots.
The contents of each pot is carefully tapped out before each seedling is gently separated from its neighbour using a sharp object, in this case, the sharp end of the plant label.
Each seedling is handled carefully using just the seed leaves as the point of contact and not by the stem which bruises easily.
The seedling is placed in to its pot of compost which has been prepared with a planting hole sufficient for it to be lowered in to. The compost is then gently firmed around the young plant securing it in place.
The space on the benches, left behind by the removal of the cuttings, is filling up quickly and will soon be completely filled when the pricking out is completed over the next few weeks.