Whether you are a first time grower or someone who has been in the Hamama family for a while now, it’s always helpful to learn a few tried & true tips & tricks! Below you will find some Hamama hacks to help you get the perfect harvest every time, starting with the initial soak!
Getting a good soak is essential for a nice full harvest! Below are a couple hacks we have found to help ensure that you get an evenly and properly saturated quilt.
1. Let’s start with the type of water you use to grow your greens! We recommend using filtered water, as it removes the impurities that might cause some undesirable results with your Seed Quilt. Some water systems have: mold, farm run-off (think herbicides, which will severely harm your seeds), lead, etc. We advise against using distilled water. A good rule of thumb: if it’s good for you to drink, it’s good for the plants to drink!
2. If you feel like your Seed Quilt just isn’t absorbing enough water, you may need to simply add a splash bit more water to your tray for the soak (up to the top of the fill line is fine, but not further)! You can always adjust the water level in your tray so that you get a good soak. The most important thing is that your seeds aren’t ever resting in water afterwards. You can check out more watering tips here!
3. The best indicator of a properly soaked Seed Quilt is the Seed Quilt turning a shade darker from absorbing water. The images below show the color progression as you are soaking!
Seed Quilt 0% soaked:
Seed Quilt 50% soaked:
Seed Quilt 100% Soaked:
4. Take a look at this quick video demonstration of an initial soak. Keep a close eye on the color change of the quilt as the water reaches the seed pods!
5. If you would like a more in depth look at the soaking process, check out this super informative video from pro-grower Sean Goodman on our Hamama Friends group Facebook!
6. Fellow grower Vicky from Hamama Friends also shared her own technique for soaking that she calls the “Gentle Bend”. Simply bend the seed quilt slightly inwards so that the middle is the first to touch the water in the tray then gently unbend until the rest of the quilt is in the tray. Voila!
7. A final tip for checking whether your Seed Quilt was immersed successfully is to flick the seed pods of your Seed Quilt afterwards! If they move around, that means the base is still dry and didn’t receive water. Just push down on those pods so the base touches the water!
If you weren’t able to get a good soak the first time, no worries! There is still hope to salvage your greens, you just want to catch a poor soak as soon as possible. If there is absolutely no action by day 3, the Seed Quilt was likely either over or under-watered when planting. Here are some Seed Quilt “reset” hacks to get your Seed Quilt back on track!
1. Under-Soaked Reset
a. Before day 3 of growth cycle unpeeled:
Lift seed quilt from coconut mat to expose felt underside and spritz bottom of ungerminated seeds with water. Keep delayed areas covered until they are ready to be peeled.
b. After day 3 of growth cycle unpeeled:
Wait until germinated greens have completed their growth cycle and harvest them. Fill your tray back up to the fill line and soak the ungerminated areas again until they turn a shade darker.
c. Completely peeled seed quilt:
Spritz dry seeds with water and then cover with a moist paper towel. Keep enough water in the tray for the roots to have access to once the seeds have sprouted. If there are germinated greens in your quilt, be sure to harvest to avoid overwatering.
2. Over-soaked reset
1) Remove the entire Seed Quilt and place it on a dry plate or even a colander.
2) Clean the tray - Use soap & rinse very well.
3) Look at your quilt - If the seed sections look well-drained, you're probably ready to move onto the next step! If not, let the quilt sit in the container and drain a bit more. You can also get a fan to help dry the top out.
4) After your top/seeds look pretty well-drained, place the entire quilt back into the clean and dry tray.
5) Gently pour filtered water into the sides of the tray (avoid pouring water directly onto the quilt itself)!! Carefully pour just enough water into the tray so that it reaches the middle of the dark brown coconut mat or below. Make sure to align your top of the quilt (seeds) with the bottom (coconut mat) of the quilt! If you see any edges or corners of the quilt curling or dipping down, gently pull them back up to ensure no over-watering issues.
6) Good airflow! An over-watered quilt needs airflow over the top of the quilt to reduce the standing water in the pockets under the paper.
Reminder! The "Fill Line" is only for the initial soak. You should ignore the Fill Line beyond the first soak. If any seeds are soaking in water , they will drown and eventually die.
You can find this detailed information & more support under the "Great Tips" category on our Hamama Friends Facebook Page!
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