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Some warm season vegetable plants are sensitive to root disturbance; gardeners should plant these vegetables directly outdoors after weather warms in the spring. Other warm season vegetables make excellent candidates for seeding into small pots or containers for later transplanting.
Solanums. Solanums, including tomatoes, peppers and eggplants are not sensitive to root disturbance and are ideal candidates for transplant. Gardeners may place seeds for tomatoes, peppers and eggplants directly into small pots for later transplanting. Of course, seeds can also be started directly outdoors when risk of frost is low and daytime spring temperature are sufficiently warm. Different vegetables have different cultural requirements, including daytime temperatures. For more complete cultural requirements of different solanums, see tomato, pepper, hot and pepper, sweet.
Cucurbits. Unlike solanums, most cucurbits, including summer squash (including zucchini), winter squash, cucumbers and melons are sensitive to any root disturbance, such as from transplanting. Surface cultivation, digging, harvesting root crops, thinning, or weeding near established plants may also cause root disturbance to cucurbits. From the time of germination onward, it’s generally best to avoid all root disturbance as much as possible for all cucurbits. Seed cucurbits directly outdoors, when daytime temperatures are sufficiently warm. For more complete cultural requirements of different cucurbits, see summer squash, winter squash, zucchini, pumpkin and cucumber.
Corn and Beans. Like cucurbits, corn and beans, both pole and bush, are sensitive to root disturbance, including from transplanting. Again, like cucurbits, seed corn and beans directly outdoors, when daytime temperatures are sufficiently warm. For more complete cultural requirements, see corn, bean, pole and bean, bush.
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