Row by Row Episode 188: Direct Seeding VS. Transplanting
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Row by Row Episode 188: Direct Seeding VS. Transplanting

Row by Row Episode 188: Direct Seeding VS. Transplanting

Whether you are a novice gardener or seasoned veteran, it is very important to understand the differences between transplanting and direct sowing. Advantages and Disadvantages to each method. A lot depends on both the vegetable and time of year.

Direct Seeding


  • Some things don’t tolerate transplanting. Spinach, beets, carrots, peas are examples that like to start and finish in same place
  • Things that are quick to germinate. Radishes, beans, peas, beets, and turnips.
  • Requires less labor and ten to mature faster
  • More cost effective, especially if growing in large quantity.
  • Better drought tolerance


  • Can be riskier, due to contending with weather and weed pressure
  • Crowded plants, need to thin so plants don’t compete for light, water, and nutrients.
  • Direct sown crops occupy the land longer than the same crop transplanted.
  • Direct sown crops may be harder to get started in cold (or hot) conditions.

Vegetables to Direct Seed

Beans                         Corn                           Turnips

Carrots                      Zucchini                    Bunching Onions

Peas                           Radish

Spinach                     Squashes



  • Starting with baby plants can give you more control and predictable results
  • Seeds started in more ideal conditions, easier to care for
  • Transplants give you a huge jumpstart on the season, start earlier
  • Increase harvest with succession planting.
  • Transplants can be more resistant to insect and other pest pressure.
  • Plants that have already developed roots and other systems are stronger, making them less vulnerable to outside conditions.


  • Extending the season by starting earlier does mean more work.
  • It takes extra time caring for the starts, as they won’t get water if you don’t provide it.
  • Transplant shock can delay harvest – be sure to learn and practice good techniques.
  • More attention is needed to watering new plants after transplanting, (compared to direct sowing) as some root damage is almost inevitable. (Plug flats and soil blocks minimize root damage.)
  • You need a good greenhouse set-up if you plan to grow lots of transplants.

Vegetables to Transplant (start in trays)

Herbs                               Eggplant                    Peppers         Cabbage

Collards                           Kale                            Scallions

Broccoli                           Kohlrabi                    Tomato

Leeks                                Onion                      Watermelon

Vegetables to Direct Seed or Transplant

Okra Zinnias Sunflowers Beets Roselle Lettuce

Product of the Week:

Seed Starting Supplies

New Seeds for 2022

Watch the Complete Show on YouTube Below:

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