Hardening off plants

Up and out at 6:45am this morning.

Before I getting ready for work, I spent a bit of time taking some trays of plants out of the greenhouse, to harden them off. I have been doing this since last weekend, and will continue to do so until next weekend.

The idea of hardening off ensures plants that have been growing in a protected environment (in this case my greenhouse) will not suffer too much shock when left out, or planted out permanently. The hardening off technique involves putting the plants out during the day, and taking them in under cover at night, thus acclimatising them to the outdoors. The process typically takes between one to two weeks, sometimes a little longer.

The plants I am hardening off include three varieties of the bare root strawberries I potted up last month, a variety of sweet pea called 'White Elegance' and a mixture of some other herbaceous plants.

By hardening of these plants, I am freeing up valuable space in the greenhouse for more seeds and plants to come.
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