Poor seedlings of petunias: why not sprouting and what to do

Petunias are famous for their beauty and duration of flowering. They are grown at home in pots and garden beds. Seed companies offer a huge number of varieties of petunia, with different colors and flower size. Each consumer can choose alluvial or granular seeds. In this case, regardless of the choice, the florist at the stage of growing seedlings may face problems. So, often seedlings of petunia grow poorly or its seeds do not germinate at all. Why is this happening and what to do in order to grow good, strong seedlings of these wonderful flowers? We will try to find answers to these questions together.

Causes of seed non-emergence

It is often possible to observe a situation when the seeds of a petunia sown for seedlings have not sprouted, and they have to be sifted out again. Such an incident can occur for several reasons:

  1. Petunia seeds are "old". Thus, for most varieties of petunia, the shelf life of seeds is 3-4 years, however, even in this period, the percentage of germination of plants decreases over time. Buying petunia seeds in the store, you should pay attention to the date of their harvesting.
  2. Violations in storage mode can also lead to a loss of germination. For example, having collected the seeds of petunia on their own, they should be stored until the next season in conditions with low humidity and room temperature.
  3. Deep planting of seeds and violation of growing conditions.

For beginners, special attention should be paid to the last item. After all, the wrong sowing of seeds is the most common reason that petunia seeds germinate poorly. The fact is that petunias are very light-requiring. Their seeds must be sown superficially, not buried in the ground, and even the slightest layer of earth may not allow the seed to ascend.

How to sow seeds

Surface sowing of petunia seeds is quite simple. Conventionally, it consists of the following actions:

  • In the tank for growing seedlings of petunias, it is necessary to make drainage holes, then fill it with nutritious soil;
  • the soil should be watered and compacted, then sprinkle the seeds on its top layer, without covering them with soil;
  • it is recommended to install a container with crops in a warm, well-lit place with a temperature of + 22- + 260WITH;
  • Cover the container with crops with protective glass or film.
Important! Seeds scattered on the ground do not need to be watered, since the water, spreading out, will cover them with soil.

It should be noted that such a surface sowing method is suitable for loose seeds and granules. At the same time, the granules are more voluminous and make it easy to maintain the interval between crops. Considering all the recommendations, observing the temperature and light conditions, seedling shoots can be expected in 4-7 days, depending on the type of petunia.

Petunia seeds in granules before sowing in the ground can be germinated. This is especially true for planting plants in pots for decorating rooms, balconies, greenhouses. The germination method proposed below is also suitable for growing seedlings.

For the germination of petunia granules:

  1. Put a paper napkin or gauze patch on the saucer.
  2. On top of the napkin, spread out the coated seeds of petunia and cover them with another napkin or gauze on top.
  3. Moisten the resulting "sandwich" and place it in a plastic bag together with a saucer.
  4. Place a bag of seeds in a sunny place with a temperature of + 22- + 260WITH.
  5. With the advent of the first shoots, remove the top layer of material from the seeds and place the saucer in the bag again.
  6. When plants have cotyledon leaves, they should dive into cups with fertile soil for further cultivation.

As the seedlings grow, petunias require periodic watering, however, an excess of moisture can lead to rotting of the roots. Therefore, watering seedlings should be petunias as the soil dries. Also good root method of irrigation, when the containers with seedlings set on a substrate with water. Moisture in this case is absorbed into the soil through drainage holes. Other ways of watering young seedlings are shown in the video:

Analyzing the above material, one can understand that in order to obtain petunia seedlings, it is necessary to choose "fresh", last year's seeds stored in proper conditions, and germinate them in the presence of abundant solar illumination by surface sowing or germination of the granules.

Causes of Slow Growth

Young shoots of petunia, of course, "pleases the eye" of the grower, however, in order for it to become a full-fledged strong seedling a lot of time must pass. During the growing season, seedlings of petunias require attention and compliance with some rules of care. Otherwise, its growth slows down, and sometimes stops at all. The reasons for this anomaly may be several.

Natural reason

Young seedlings consisting of 2 cotyledon leaves, stop their growth for the development of the root system.

Comment! Such a stop is natural for the culture and can last up to 2 weeks. During this period, the seedlings should be taken care of as usual, by watering, and observing the humidity and temperature indicators of the microclimate.

Low temperatures

Petunia is a heat-loving plant. Its seedlings should be grown in conditions with a temperature of at least +200C, otherwise the growth of seedlings will slow. Temperatures below +150C can lead to stunting and death of plants. It is worth noting that they slow down the growth of seedlings and temperature fluctuations. So, the difference in temperature day and night for young seedlings should not exceed 100WITH.

Important! Excessively high temperatures can also lead to slower growth of seedlings of petunias.

Such overheating of plants is typical when grown in a mini-greenhouse (under protective glass or film).


The relatively low temperature and high humidity of the soil contributes to the development of the fungus and, as a consequence, the formation of blackleg, root rot and plant growth. You can fight the fungus with the help of special preparations, for example, "Fitosporina". Also in the fight against fungus, you can use a weak solution of potassium permanganate.

Lack of nutrients

The first two weeks after the emergence of seedlings of petunia seedlings are not recommended to feed. During this period, for natural reasons, petunia grows poorly. However, if the seedlings do not grow in the future, then it is worth feeding it. To do this, you should use universal fertilizers containing nitrogen, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, for example, "Green Crystal", "Florist-Growth", "Agricola". The growth promoter for seedlings of petunias are the B vitamins (B1, B6, B12). They can be purchased at the pharmacy and used for spraying.

After diving into separate tanks or after disembarking, seedlings of petunias can also slow down their growth. In this case, it is recommended to use fertilizers that make the root more powerful and developed. An example of such a drug is "Yellow Crystal".


For the cultivation of healthy seedlings of petunias, you should know the rules of germinating seeds, watering seedlings, feeding young plants. Only a competent, integrated approach with the observance of climatic indicators of humidity and temperature will avoid slow growth. In turn, farmers offer a wide range of fertilizing and preparations for activating the growth of seedlings, however, we should not forget that petunias have a long growing season a priori, so seed culture should be sown for seedlings in February-March.