Caring For Your Saplings

Our 2 Minute Regeneration campaign is well underway and it’s been amazing to see so many people planting, foraging and getting involved. We can’t wait to crowdsource the first 2 Minute Forest and get this planting party started! 

The concept is simple; it take’s just 2 minutes to sow a seed, but an entire family to grow a forest. That’s why we asked for your help in bringing this regeneration project to life.

Your saplings will hopefully have germinated over the winter months, before strengthening in the summer sunshine and becoming ready to plant out in our 2 Minute Forest at some point in the future. Below you’ll find a few general hints and tips for making sure your saplings grow happily, ensuring they’ll be ready for their new home in our forest.

1. Make sure your little saplings have light! Direct sunlight will be too harsh on their young leaves but a warm, bright environment is perfect for encouraging growth.

2. Keep them moist but not wet. It’s important to water your saplings without drowning them.

3. Did you know warmth speeds germination? 18 degrees is a good average for root growth. 

4. In the early stages, seeds provide their own nutrition, but once they reach about 3 – 4 inches they like to be fed about 1/2 inch of compost to help them on their way. 

5. When they are a little bigger it’s good to re-pot your seedlings to avoid pot-bound root systems. Switch them to larger containers with deeper fresh soil mix. (Check out The Conservation Volunteers https://www.tcv.org.uk for more info on what soil mix different types of trees like.)

6. When your plants seem strong enough it’s good to gently expose them to outdoor conditions. Pop them outside in a spot sheltered from the wind and in dappled sunlight for a few hours a day so they can harden up to the natural elements. You can acclimatise your plants to sunlight by placing them in sunnier locations for longer periods of time each day. 

7. As a general rule, once your plant is 40cm – 50cm in height it should be ready for planting out.

Hopefully this short guide will help you take care of your seedlings! We can’t wait to have our planting party with you all next year, and to get the saplings in the ground. If you’d like to support us and our 2 Minute Forest without growing, you can simply donate to The 2 Minute Foundation here.

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