General information

Tomatoes love "snail": the original way of growing seedlings


Good afternoon, dear readers!

Increasingly, when searching for information on how to grow one or another vegetable crop, vegetable growers come across a way of growing in “snails” and “diapers”.

This method has gained great popularity due to Yulia Minyaeva, who tells about it on her channel “In the garden, in the garden”. This method has many fans and has its advantages. What is it?

What you need to prepare for sowing snails

The process begins with the preparation of the workplace.. You will need a flat surface on which it will be convenient to place all the necessary equipment. Any table will do, it is most convenient to work on it.

  • A bucket or other container with a moist fertile soil. It should be prepared in advance, in accordance with the culture that is supposed to be sown in the "snail".
  • Seeds, processed and decontaminated in the same way as for traditional sowing in seedling boxes. They are better placed in a shallow dish, so they are more convenient to take.
  • Tweezers will be needed if the gardener is uncomfortable to take the seeds by hand, or they are very small.
  • As the main material (the one from which the "snail" will be formed), take ordinary building substrate. Perhaps someone has it at home, left over from the repair. But the acquisition of new material does not require significant costs.

A 10 cm wide strip will be needed. A gardener himself determines the length based on the number of seeds of one variety. Sowing of different varieties is not recommended because of the different germination period and the possible difference in plant height.

Marigold seedling in snail

Also the determination of the length can be influenced by the volume of the vessel in which the finished “snail” will be installed.

The best choice would be transparent plastic container. Later it will be useful to control the water level in it, which will nourish the roots of the plant with moisture. The vessel should be one and a half centimeters more than the thickness of the "snail". This is necessary so that you can effortlessly place a roll of seeds in it.

It will take three stationery gum, they will serve as fixers. Two for the very "snail" so that it does not turn around. The third is needed for attaching a plastic bag. It will serve as a cap for the "snail", in order to maintain a humid microclimate and heat.

Sprayer will be needed for watering the finished "snail" after sowing seeds.

Visually see what materials are needed for sowing in the "snail" in the video by the author Yulia Minyaeva:

Sowing seeds in the "snail"

Uncertainty and concern, this work can cause only that gardener, who first started this method of growing seedlings. To protect yourself from possible failure, you can apply a fallback.

Carry out additional sowing in the usual, traditional way - in the transfer boxes. In this case, it will be possible to compare the crops, and give preference to the best option.

You can sow seeds even on toilet paper in a snail.

So: spreading a strip of substrate on the table, with a narrow side toward you, you should proceed to a uniform arrangement of the soil on it. A handful of soil is taken from a nearby bucket, leveled across the entire width of the base. The height of the ground layer can be 1.5-2 cm. It is not necessary to immediately fall asleep the entire length of the tape, it is quite inconvenient.

It reminds baking preparation - a roll with a stuffing. Therefore, for the female half of the gardeners the process does not seem complicated.

Having folded the sowed part, hold the roll with the left hand, and with the right hand pour the ground, level, lay the seeds and roll again. The action is repeated until the base length or seed is complete.

Next, the finished "snail" should be placed vertically. It is important not to confuse the top and bottom of the roll.

We fix the bundle with the seeds with rubber bands and the whole structure is rearranged into the prepared container. You can use plastic boxes in which seedlings were previously grown. It contains several snails. They are quite stable, and set next to eliminate the risk of overturning.

If there was a slight subsidence of land during the transposition, it should be added. It is required that the primer is flush with the edges of the base material.

Pour the crop out of the sprayer, put the bag on top and secure with a rubber band on the roll. Access to the tank must be open. This will be needed for further watering if the need arises.

Fully equipped "snail" is sent for seed germination in the warmest place. Someone is the top shelves in the kitchen, and some put the vessels with seedlings closer to the central heating radiators. It all depends on the sown culture.

Emerging loops of seedlings warn of the need to remove the shelter and move to a bright place!

Applied "snails" and for planting flowers. They are especially good for sowing cold-resistant varieties. If the weather is favorable, they can immediately be planted in open ground, bypassing the picking stage.

The advantages of "snail" crops

The biggest advantages of this method in a city apartment are considered to be space saving on windowsills. Compact, vertical, they quickly become the favorite seedling vessel of many summer residents.

The shoots in the "snail" are located at the same distance from each other, which does not interfere with their uniform development. This is another of the advantages of this method of sowing.

Sunlight plants also receive an equal amount, in addition, there is the possibility of free access to each "snail". To turn the plant opposite side to the sun, there is no need to turn the whole box. This is very inconvenient and quite time-consuming, when the entire window sill is made up of razadnymi boxes. In the case of “snails,” it is enough to turn it around its axis, and the problem will be solved.

It requires much less soil mix, which is also important. It often happens that the gardener cannot stock up the soil mixture in sufficient volume, due to the lack of storage space in a city apartment. In this case, you have to use the purchase of the soil. For "snails" it needs a minimum amount. And this is a very big plus for snails. In addition, there is a significant savings in the family budget. Gardener will save on the purchase of soil for planting.

Seedling leek snail

It is possible to reuse substrates. They should be thoroughly washed with soap and water and dried. When storing, they will occupy a minimum of space, compared to a rassack box.

It remains to wait for shoots to appear. And when they grow up, the gardener is waiting for a new job - transplanting a young plant, diving.

Pickling seedlings in the "diaper"

Before proceeding to the description of this method, it is necessary to clarify that the "snail" is a self-made structure for sowing seeds. And in the "diaper" planted plants that require picks.

Getting started, you need to make sure that everything necessary is prepared for this.
Low capacity with soil, fertile and hydrated should be located in close proximity. Working with wet soil is more convenient, it crumbles less.

Plastic bags, they will serve, directly, diaper. Their size depends on the age of the seedlings. For a seedling with five leaves, small breakfast bags sized 18x27 cm are suitable; larger plants need a larger area.

  • Container is required. In it will be located ready, "swaddled" convolutions with seedlings. Sawdust should be poured on its bottom and moistened. This condition is not necessary in the event that the “diaper” is turned up in its lower part.
  • You should always have on hand a sprayer or a small watering can with water.
  • A small flat spatula or fork is convenient to take individual shoots from the "snail".
  • Those who are engaged in this type of picking for the first time can use office elastic bands to attach the received bundles.

The process of "swaddling"

It is more convenient to carry out the work on the table using a shallow dish or tray. From them it is easier to clean the scattered earth.

The "snail" should be released from the attachment and carefully unfold the roll to the first shoot. Remove the plant from the substrate with a spatula and set it aside for a short while.

In the middle of the surface of the package, located on a tray, pour a full, with a good slide, a spoonful of earth. If it is more convenient for someone to do it by hand, then a handful of soil will be quite enough. Slightly level, press and water well (of course, not to the dirt), and it is better from the sprayer.

The prepared plant is located on the surface of the earth. If the root system of the plant is strong and extends beyond the lower edge of the package, they need to be slightly tucked to the top.

Pinching the roots should not be done, so as not to give the young seedlings additional stress. Pinching is practiced if the seedlings have one long, underdeveloped root.

At the top of the package should end at the cotyledon leaves. Another spoon (or handful) of earth is poured over the roots. Now you need to roll the package so that you get a glass with a sprout inside. If the gardener does not like the fact that the earth is a little showered from the bottom of the “diaper”, the situation can be remedied with toilet paper.

In the middle of the package, in the lower part, lay a double layer of paper. Pour the land, arrange the plant and first wrap up the paper. The bottom of the cup will turn out, and then roll up the film, filled with earth from the root system. The paper will not bring any inconvenience to the seedlings, it will soon become sodden. With a lack of soil on top of the bundle it should be poured and, if it is dry, pour it.

If the gardener is not sure about the reliability of the bundles with seedlings, he can strengthen them with an elastic band. In any case, they are tightly placed in the container, so that there is no possibility of their falling.

Watering plants depends on how the plant “swaddled”. If the package has a plastic bottom, the water is poured from above, on the ground at the base of the stem. For bottomless cups, water is poured directly into the container.

The advantages of sowing method in the "diaper"

Being engaged in transplanting seedlings from the "snail" in the "diaper" is the possibility of interruption of work at any time, without harm to the rest of the plants. They simply will not be disturbed. The snail should be rolled up, having poured a handful of earth on the edge, and secured with a rubber band.

Seedlings quietly wait in the wings.

Significant space savings in the early spring garden gardener's bed - windowsill. Vertical rolls of seedlings, tightly installed in the container does not take up much space. It is convenient to turn them opposite side to the light, if its inclined growth is noticed.

From the “diapers” - in the open ground

Planting seedlings, matured in the "diapers", is no different from planting plants wicked in plastic cups or a common seedling box. For them, in the same way, gradual hardening is required, and only after this, young bushes of vegetables are planted in open ground. You need shading from the hot sunshine for a few days and the usual care, corresponding to a particular culture.

Material selection

As a frame material that simultaneously plays the role of a separating layer, a substrate for a laminate or a polymer film is used. The choice of the structure of the outer shell is based only on their own preferences.

  • Film - the material is cheap and affordable. It is necessary to use varieties with high density so that the bundle with seeds does not fall apart. If a low density film is used, it should be folded several times, or strong paper should be placed between the layers.
  • The substrate for the laminate - a convenient material, but you can only buy it in the hardware store. The cost of the substrate is higher than the cost of the film, but the seedlings in this material feel more comfortable, since the porous structure allows for better retention of heat and moisture. You can cut the substrate with a wallpaper knife under the ruler, which is faster than cutting with scissors.


Calculate the required dimensions of the shell according to the conditions of further care of the seedlings. The width of the strip is chosen as follows:

  • 10 cm, if the seedlings continue to dive,
  • 15 cm, if the seedlings are left in the "snail" before landing in the ground.

The length is determined by the formula L = 2 * a + b * (n-1), where:

  • L is the length of the strip,
  • a - indent of laying the inner layer from the outer edge of the shell, necessary for convenient formation of the convolution, a = 5 cm,
  • b - the interval between seeds during planting (b = 5 cm, if the seedlings are planned to dive, b = 10 cm, if the seedlings are planted in the ground),
  • n is the number of seeds.

For the inner layer, where the seeds will be planted, a material is chosen that retains moisture well:

  • prepared soil
  • universal mixtures
  • toilet paper,
  • napkins.

I had the experience of planting seedlings in a snail. So let's say, in a fashionable fashion). First, the seeds were grown in the diaper, and then the resulting seedlings had already moved to the snail. The substrate was made of thick oilcloth, such everywhere you find. She poured not a layer of earth on her, placing each plant at a distance of at least 2 cm from each other. Then everything collapses into a roll and put in a plastic box (it is possible in the bottle, depending on how many snails turned out). During the growth of seedlings each other does not interfere, the roots do not intertwine with each other. And you can grow in this way pepper, eggplant, tomatoes, flowers.


Seed preparation

Regardless of the variety of tomatoes and the method of growing seedlings, you should pay attention to a few key points. You should choose the seeds of the crop last year, they give the best germination. Before planting, it is necessary to carry out a thorough preparation of planting material, which includes the following items: sorting, germination, treatment with growth stimulants and antifungal agents, hardening.


Sorting involves visual rejection of seeds by color, size, texture, integrity. It is also worth removing sticky lumps. The sorting process can be replaced by soaking for 6 hours in a solution of 1 tsp. salt in a liter of water. Seeds unsuitable for planting will float to the surface. After rejection, planting material should be dried if germination in a nutrient medium is not intended, or sent to a nutrient solution.

The mass of 1000 quality seeds should be 2.8–5 g


Pre-germination of seeds controls the process of seedling seedlings and accelerates the growth of seedlings. For swelling, seeds are soaked in a nutrient medium for 10–12 hours, after which they are kept on wetted gauze or toilet paper until sprouts appear. Aloe juice or special products diluted in soft warm water serves as a nutrient medium. In addition, a few drops of potassium permanganate or other antiseptics should be added to the water. It is possible to sow tomato seeds without soaking before, then growth stimulants and protective agents are applied directly to the soil.

Soaking seeds in growth stimulants will accelerate germination


The climate of the region may be unfavorable for the growth and fruiting of tomato seedlings, since this plant is thermophilic. Special varieties of tomatoes with high adaptability to different climatic conditions have been developed, but it is possible to “get used” to unmodified plant varieties by hardening the seeds before planting. To do this, after 10 hours of swelling in warm water, the seeds are placed in a refrigerator or taken out for four hours on the street, after which they are moved to a warm place at the same time. The procedure is repeated.

To begin the process of hardening should be the evening (on the eve of the weekend): soaking the seeds for the night, put them in the cold in the morning. Thus, in the evening the quenching process can be carried out completely.

For hardening, seeds can be kept for 1-2 days in a refrigerator at 1 ° С, periodically spraying them with water

This year, on the advice of farmers from Rostov-on-Don, performed only one operation - wrapped the seeds in pieces of cotton, wrote a ballpoint pen No., folded rolls like cigarettes in a mold, covered it with snow and left it on the window sill. As soon as the snow melted, poured water and again covered with snow, after that snow melted, I spread the seeds, unrolling the pieces of cloth, in a box, put it in a bag and put it in a warm place. The next day, the seeds snapped as if on cue, and I planted them ... everything, that’s all the hardening pre-planting ... the plants grew strong, healthy, didn’t hurt anything ... the snow however ... melt water ... live water


Planting seeds in the "snail" with the ground

As a nutrient layer, not simple earth is used, but prepared soil. Tomatoes love loose soil consisting of black soil and sand in equal proportions. Before planting seeds, the earth should be treated with preparations against the development of fungi and bacteria, or heat treatment should be carried out. Ways such:

  • Frost. The soil, laid out a layer of a couple of centimeters on a dry substrate, is frozen in the street for 4 hours.
  • Steaming. Грунт обрабатывается небольшими порциями в течение получаса над кипящей кастрюлей. Для этого дуршлаг выстилают марлей или тонкой натуральной тканью, на которую без утрамбовки высыпают грунт толщиной не более 5 сантиметров. Помещают дуршлаг в кастрюле так, чтобы не намочить грунт.

After sterilization and drying, the earth is sifted through a sieve to make the soil light and separate large debris. According to the instructions in the soil add mineral fertilizer.

It is important not to peroxidate the soil, because tomatoes love an alkaline environment.

Before sowing seeds into the ground, the following materials and tools are prepared:

  • priming,
  • paddle
  • laminate backing or oilcloth,
  • seeds,
  • knife,
  • ruler,
  • spray gun
  • watering can or syringe.

The process of planting tomato seeds in the "snail" includes the following steps:

  1. Cut the substrate, taking into account further planting.
  2. Lay out the substrate on a flat surface.
  3. On the substrate, retreating 4 centimeters from the upper edge, spread a layer of 2 cm in wet soil. It is necessary to pour the earth, departing from the outer edges of 5 cm.
  4. Lightly tamp the ground with a roller or spatula.
  5. Tightly roll the "snail", fixing the end with a rubber band or adhesive tape.

Before planting seeds need to compact the ground, spreading it on a substrate and turning into a "snail"

"Snails" is desirable to inscribe, so as not to confuse varieties of planted seeds

The advantage of this method is the high adaptability of plants during picking or final planting, since the root system of tomato seedlings is initially surrounded by a protective clod of earth and is less damaged. Plants germinate more robust, because the prepared land is a rich nutrient medium.

Among the shortcomings, it is noted that with poor-quality cultivation of the land from pathogenic bacteria and fungi, the probability of the appearance of a “black leg” in tomato shoots increases. If this happens, then it is worth treating the plants with Trichodermin.

Spores of gray rot are present almost always and everywhere; an increase in humidity, soil cover by mulch, thickened plantings, and stagnation of air can provoke overgrowth and infection. The year before last, she was saved only with Alirin B + Gamair preparations, taking 1-2 tablets per liter of one and the other. Last year, she sprinkled "practically" for prevention and gray mold, and phytophtoras - there was no infection. Very well helps "dusting" the soil, the infected parts of the plant with ashes. Most of us have planted a lot of tomatoes in the greenhouse, and “in the legs” they also have lettuce with dill, do not forget to look, whether uninvited guests will also grow there.


Planting seeds in the "snail" with toilet paper

When choosing this method of planting tomato seeds you need to prepare:

  • toilet roll,
  • laminate backing or oilcloth,
  • scissors or office knife,
  • ruler,
  • spray gun
  • seeds.

Sowing produced according to the instructions:

  1. Cut the shell strips, calculating the size of the seedlings, which will be rioted in a separate container.
  2. Spread the strips on a flat surface.
  3. Top place a layer of toilet paper of any density and manufacturer, lining the top edge of the future "snail".
  4. Moisturize spray paper.
  5. At a distance of 5 cm from each other put sprouted tomato seeds, retreating from the upper edge of no more than 1 cm. Leave indents at the edges of 5 cm.

Seed should be placed at a distance of 5 cm from each other and 1 cm from the top edge

The roll should not be rolled up very tightly, as the soaked paper reliably fixes the seeds.

The advantages of this method are as follows:

  • hygiene of the process of planting and care (as there is no contact with the ground),
  • the absence of the initial causative agent of fungal diseases in tomato seedlings,
  • landing speed
  • availability of materials.

The disadvantages include the obligatory picking of plants in a clearly defined period. It is important not to allow the plants to keep the plants in a poor nutrient medium, as this will lead to the pulling out of the sprouts, and later on to a long period of adaptation of the seedlings in the ground and late fruiting.

When picking, it is possible to reuse the “snail”. For this you need:

  1. Expand the bundle.
  2. Go through the seedlings by placing the plants at a distance of at least 10 cm from each other.
  3. Pour a layer of earth in 2 cm over the entire area of ​​the strip. It is necessary to use moist soil so that the earth does not crumble.
  4. Re-roll the roll, fasten the end and put the "snail" in the pan.

The addition of enriched soil at the initial seed growth stage stimulates seedlings and forms strong planting material.

Watering and feeding

Watering, fertilizer and fertilizing seedlings spend on schedule. While the top of the “snails” is covered with foil, it is not necessary to water the soil, but once a day it is necessary to ventilate the greenhouse for half an hour to avoid the development of fungus, which at this stage is fraught with complete loss of seedlings.

Moisturize the soil from a watering can or spray gun by spraying water over the "snail". When sprouts appear from the ground, should be watered in the pan. It is best to use warm, melted, rain or boiled water.

After the appearance of 2-3 leaves, the seedlings should be fed with a solution of nitrophosphate and complex fertilizer in water (1 teaspoon: 1 teaspoon: 1 liter). The fertilizer is repeated every 10 days.

The pickling of seedlings involves planting plants in separate containers or at a distance at which the roots of neighboring sprouts do not intertwine. Often, the main roots of seedlings of tomatoes are pinched to form a more spreading lateral root system, which speeds up the nourishment of the bush. Planting can be done after the appearance of 2–3 true leaves, three days before this, after completing feeding.

Video: picking seedlings from the "snail"

  • marker - sign tomato varieties,
  • a tray to keep the earth from falling everywhere
  • scoop spray.

  • spread the soil on the substrate with a layer of 1 cm, stepping back a centimeter from the top edge, gently overhang,
  • moisten with a spray bottle,
  • departing 2 cm from the edge of the soil, lay the seeds, slightly deepening them,
  • as the filling of the strip twist, but not too tight,
  • when seeding is completed, the last 5 cm is left free from the ground, the excess part of the strip is cut off,
  • helix fasten with rubber bands, put on a plastic bag to create a greenhouse effect,
  • Bottom of the free part of the fold and put the snail in a transparent container, watered.

Place the snails on the container one by one or several pieces, depending on its size. At the bottom pour water.

If the snail turned out to be big and there is a danger that the gum will pinch the roots of the tomatoes, you can fix the edge of the substrate with tape.

For the first time, until the soil is compacted and stops to get enough sleep, the bag (greenhouse) can be replaced with shoe covers: one on top, the other on the bottom.

Seeds can be germinated without soil - on multi-layered toilet paper, laid out on a substrate under the laminate. Pre-paper moistened with a warm solution: Epin or water with hydrogen peroxide. Everything else is done the same way as when planting tomato seeds in a snail with the ground.

But seeds planted in this way will not get enough nutrition. Therefore, the beginning of the sprouting sprouts is a signal to the fact that you need to unwind the snail and fill the tomato seeds with soil.

Features care for seedlings

Boxes with seedlings put on a warm bright windowsill. The film, worn on top, is periodically opened for airing. When the first two or three loops appear, the top film is immediately removed. Wait until all the shoots sprout, do not need.

As long as the seeds only germinate, they cannot reach the moisture from the pallet, so they are watered from above. When the roots are stretched enough, you can simply add water to the container. Tomatoes themselves will take the liquid from the tank.

If necessary, the seedlings are watered from above, but only from a spray bottle, so that the seeds and weak growth do not sink into the bottom layer of the substrate under the stream.

How to unzip snail correctly

Despite planting seeds at the same time and the same conditions, the seedlings in the cochlea can be of different quality: some plants look strong and strong, others have not yet grown to the right size. To grow up weak seedlings and separate strong seedlings, the snail can be swooped out. For these purposes, you should carefully unwind the roll with tape, carefully remove the strong and large-looking seedlings. This is not difficult, as the plants are sown at a considerable distance from each other and their root system is not intertwined.

After the removal of strong specimens, the cochlea is folded again, secured with an elastic band and sent to the window sill.

To evaluate the effectiveness of the new method, you can try to sow some plants into a snail, and some with the classical method. As an experiment, the resulting seedlings can be compared. It is possible that the new method will significantly simplify spring sowing work and show an excellent result.